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What They Said: April 2008

Holmes and Dunlap with Atwater

FLASH!: Honorees Terry Dunlap and Keenan Holmes with University prez Dr. Tony Atwater at Saturday’s IUP Legacy Gala at Carnegie Music Hall. More than 300 black-ties recognized alums for their outstanding contributions to the university and the community.

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 28, 2008

Computers have changed the way students choose colleges, but many end up picking the same colleges their pre-wired predecessors favored, local guidance counselors say. At Cedar Crest High School, most students are going to Penn State University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Susquehanna University, Lebanon Valley College and other Pennsylvania schools, guidance counselor Frank Kuhn said.

—“New Tools Lead Teens to Same Colleges,”
Harrisburg Patriot-News, April 28, 2008

Though they’ll be hard to recognize in the crowd, a sizable number of students who will cross commencement lawns at some colleges this spring aren’t actually at the finish line. So long as they are close—typically within a few months of completing their degree—many schools permit them to bask in the glow of an achievement not quite earned. At Indiana University of Pennsylvania, which has two commencements a year, 141 students or 15 percent of those so far planning to take part in the May 10 ceremony, are actually summer graduates. By contrast, Penn State has three ceremonies and reports no more than a handful of early walkers each semester. No matter how many takers there are, colleges monitor closely who is eligible so they can maintain academic integrity.

—“Many College Seniors Don Caps and Gowns,
but They’re Credits Shy of a Degree
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 27, 2008

‘Ravenstahl’s position in Pittsburgh is still a mystery to me,’ said David Chambers, a political science professor at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. ‘In some ways he seems wet behind the ears. At other times he has his finger on the pulse of Pittsburgh.’ 

—“Analysis: Fallout Awaits Politicos Who Chose Sides,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 24, 2008

Officials from the American Revolution Center have asserted that the land north of the Schuylkill River at Valley Forge, where they hope to build a museum and conference center, was ‘neither [George] Washington’s Commissary nor a Revolutionary War site.’ This is an inaccurate characterization of complex ‘facts on the ground.’ WAYNE BODLE teaches American history at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and is the author of The Valley Forge Winter: Civilians and Soldiers in War (Penn State Press, 2002).

—“As I See It,”
Harrisburg Patriot News, April 23, 2008

Indiana, Pa. — Indiana University of Pennsylvania has hired a new provost and vice president for academic affairs.  Gerald Intemann was dean of the Jess & Mildred Fisher College of Science and Mathematics at Towson University in Maryland from 2000 to 2007. Most recently, he’s served as a tenured faculty member in the college’s physics, astronomy and geosciences department. A start date has not been set. He’s filling a position vacated by Cheryl Samuels, who left the university in December. She had been appointed to the position in February 2006.

“IUP Names New Provost, Vice President for Academic Affairs,”
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; Johnstown Tribune-Democrat, April 22, 2008

Indiana University of Pennsylvania has hired a new provost and vice president for academic affairs. Gerald Intemann was dean of the Jess & Mildred Fisher College of Science and Mathematics at Towson University in Maryland from 2000 to 2007. Most recently, he's served as a tenured faculty member in the college's physics, astronomy and geosciences department. A start date has not been set. He's filling a position vacated by Cheryl Samuels, who left the university in December. She had been appointed to the position in February 2006. "IUP names new provost, vice president for academic affairs,"

—Associated Press, April 21, 2008

A former private investigator, accountant and a sign language instructor are among the 10 finalists for Harford County Teacher of the Year. The finalists are: Kristina Bilderback has been teaching for seven years, all in Harford. She teaches at Bel Air Elementary. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and is completing her master’s in education from Notre Dame College in May.  She said she always wanted to be a teacher. Her parents are educators and she grew up teaching her brother, and stuffed animals.  ‘I feel like teaching is my calling and it really makes me who I am,’ she said. ‘I feel like I am making a difference in the world. It’s all worthwhile when parents come back to me and say my son or daughter was really prepared for middle school.’  

—“10 Vvying for Teacher of the Year,”
Baltimore (Md) Sun, April 20, 2008

Another barometer for the health of the local job market is the job fair at the Expo Mart in Monroeville. On April 3, a record 214 employers were recruiting, said Mark Anthony, director of career development at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. ‘We were a little concerned with the recession some employers may not do as much hiring as they had planned,’ Anthony said. ‘There might be some caution, but they’re still moving forward.’ 

—“Local Job Market Bucks Low National Forecast,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 20, 2008

Indiana University of Pennsylvania: 11 a.m. May 10, George P. Miller Stadium; John J. Kopchick, director of Growth/Obesity/Diabetes Section of Edison Biotechnology Institute and professor in the biomedical sciences at Ohio University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine, Athens, Ohio; 1,600 graduates. 

“Area College, Universities Set Commencement Schedules,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 20, 2008

Jason Guiste was at the head of the line in Indiana before 7 a.m. Wednesday to hear former President Bill Clinton lobby to get his wife back in the White House. Guiste, 26, of Indiana is not a Hillary Clinton supporter. But the Army veteran, who served in Afghanistan and attends college, has long admired her husband. ‘I came just to see Bill Clinton. I like Bill Clinton, but I’m undecided. We’ll see what happens next Tuesday,’ Guiste said. Guiste was among an estimated 3,400 people who jammed into the gymnasium at Indiana University of Pennsylvania to hear Clinton speak. IUP was the first of five scheduled stops yesterday in Western Pennsylvania.

—“Former President’s Fans Fill IUP Gym,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 17, 2008

Research has shown childhood obesity can lead to a lifetime of bad eating habits and health problems. The national concern is the subject of a Friday health summit, ‘Childhood Obesity: Understanding the Crisis, Weighing the Solutions,’ a joint presentation of the Indiana Regional Medical Center and Indiana University of Pennsylvania. It’s the second year IUP has held a conference focusing on a particular health issue, said campus spokeswoman Michelle Fryling. Last year, the topic was diabetes. According to the National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey, the number of overweight and obese children and teens tripled between 1976 and 2004, from 5 to 13.9 percent for children ages 2-5; from 6.5 percent to 18.8 percent for ages 6-11, and from 5 percent to 17.4 percent for ages 12-19. The goal is to reduce childhood obesity through healthier nutritional choices, increasing activity and decreasing ‘screen’ (television and computer) time, said Nancy Smith, director of community services at Indiana Regional Medical Center. The medical center took the lead in the community, starting four-week educational programs for parents in some county school districts. ‘It’s directed at the elementary levels, where we start our habits of eating and activity,’ Smith said. Parents are often surprised when they start reading labels and determining serving sizes, she said. ‘A serving of Pop-Tarts is one Pop-Tart, although they’re bagged as two.’ Friday's program will begin at 9 a.m. in the Hadley Union Building. Speakers include Frederick Trowbridge, medical epidemiologist and former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s control division of nutrition and physical activity; Ninon Richartz, program manager for Shaping America’s Youth; Diane Wagoner and Leigh Ann Harvey, IUP food and nutrition faculty members; Barbara Mayfield, a Purdue University registered dietitian; and Jim DeLine, community coordinator at the Michael and Susan Dell Center for Advancement of Healthy Living, University of Texas School of Public Health. The program is free and open to the public, Fryling said. Participants are asked to register by e-mailing

—“IUP Hosts Childhood Obesity Forum,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 17, 2008

ABC News’ Sarah Amos Reports: At a rally in Indiana, Pennsylvania this morning, President Bill Clinton thanked the crowd for being part of the rural, small town America that has kept his wife’s campaign alive. ‘See that, rural Clinton country?Thank you for that. Hillary’s campaign has concentrated heavily from the beginning in small towns and rural areas, medium-sized towns, all over America. The backbone of the ountry,’ began Clinton. ‘And I think it is really important. You should know how much communities like this have allowed her to continue to compete and be in a position to win this nomination, in spite of being outspent by millions and millions of dollars,’ continued Clinton, referencing Sen. Hillary Clinton’s wins in Texas and Ohio. The former president also reinforced Clinton’s need for a big victory in Pennsylvania in order to continue being completive in this race. ‘And so, if she is going to win Pennsylvania, and win it by a good margin to propel her to these other states, it will have to be in places like Indiana. Places that say, we need a president, we want somebody who we know can change everybody’s lives for the better by empowering us to deal with these problems and seize our opportunities. So, this is the heart of her campaign, places like this,’ Clinton told an applauding crowd at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Clinton could not resist an opportunity for a little fun - seeing as the event was in a town that shares the name of another important upcoming primary state. ‘You have given me a huge leg up within Hillary’s campaign. Because, you know, we had those big elections in Texas and Ohio and Rhode Island. And then it was six whole weeks before the Pennsylvania primary. Now, they speed up again, and we go from here to Indiana and North Carolina and then to West Virginia and Kentucky and Oregon and Montana and South Dakota and Puerto Rico. It’s go fast. So everybody’s worried all the time, how are we gonna do this, how are we gonna do this. And I say, well, you need another scientific genius like me, because I’m in Pennsylvania and Indiana at the same time.’ 

—ABC News, April 16, 2008

Former President Bill Clinton says his wife, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, will be the best president for small towns like Indiana, where he was greeted by hundreds of residents and university students. Organizers of Wednesday’s event at Indiana University of Pennsylvania hung a large yellow sign saying ‘Rural CountryClinton Country,’ an apparent reference to Sen. Barack Obama’s recent comments that small town folks are bitter because of job losses. Clinton immediately pointed to the sign and thanked the audience. He says his wife’s campaign has focused on small towns and rural areas because that is America. President Clinton is scheduled to move on to appearances in Kittanning, Clarion, New Castle and Cranberry Township in Butler County on Wednesday.

—Associated Press, April 16, 2008

Former President Bill Clinton returns to the region. He was at Indiana University of Pennsylvania Wednesday morning stumping for his wife, Senator Hillary Clinton. The crowd started lining up at 7:30 Wednesday morning. The former president started speaking at the Memorial Field House about 9:15. In all there were about 2,200 people listening to the speech. Clinton spoke for about an hour detailing the highlights of his wife’s campaign. He said the biggest issues right now are economic problems like the high costs of food, energy, and health insurance and the looming mortgage crisis.  He said about 90 percent of people facing foreclosure have never missed a payment. He said people need to ask themselves what they want in their lives, and which candidate can provide it for them. He detailed how Hillary has worked with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to get things accomplished. Clinton says small town communities like IUP are the heart of Hillary’s campaign.

—WTAJ-TV (Altoona, Pa.), April 16, 2008

It is such detailed work making a third-degree burn look genuine and a head injury realistic, and causing a body to fall exactly as planned. ‘It is special effects,’ says Simone Marcus, a junior theater major at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. ‘I had to make a third-degree burn look real, and rig up a wig so when the character fell forward in death, her brain was exposed. The gasp from the audience is what I lived for.’ Recognized for her creativity and ingenuity in theatrical makeup, Marcus will join two other Indiana University and two Carnegie Mellon University theater students in the national competition and prestigious showcase at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival in Washington, DC, this week. The festival is a national program started in 1969 to recognize the best among university theater programs.

Area College Students Competing at Kennedy Center,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 14, 2008

Educational institutions from Bangalore, India, made presentations in Doha, explaining their salient features to students and parents.... PES, a more established university, offers medicine, engineering and management programmes for students who have done their plus 2. The university, which currently has more than 12,000 students, has a tieup with Indiana University, Pennsylvania, and the Claremont Graduate University for Management, said Rahul Parmar, dean at the PES Group of Institutions. Both the institutes, particularly the PES, already have a number of students from Doha doing various courses.

—“Bangalore Institutions Offer Courses,”
Gulf Times, Duba, Qatar, April 14, 2008

Space is still available for Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s ‘IUP Cares: Childhood Obesity Risk: Understanding the Crisis, Weighing the Solutions’ Friday at the IUP Hadley Union Building. The majority of the programs will be held in the Ohio Room. Indiana Regional Medical Center and Ed Bratton’s Giant Eagle are financial sponsors for the program. The event is free and open to the community, but pre-registration by Wednesday is requested in order to ensure appropriate materials are prepared. Event organizers are re-questing that persons attending also take a non-perishable food item or personal care item donation for the Department of Food and Nutrition Annual Food Drive, planned in the community for Saturday, to benefit the Indiana County Community Action Program. Registration can be made by e-mail at or by calling IUP Conference Services at 724-357-2227. Act 48 credit is available for a nominal fee at registration. The ‘IUP Cares’ program, in its second year, is an initiative of IUP President Dr. Tony Atwater.

—“Space Remains for IUP Obesity Symposium,”
Kittanning Leader-Times, April 14, 2008

Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Nursing and Allied Health Professions, St. Thomas More University Parish and the IUP Department of Health and Physical Education will present the Fourth Annual Health Fair 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. Saturday at St. Thomas More University Parish, 1200 Oakland Ave., Indiana.

—“Fourth Annual Health Fair, Walk Set for IUP,”
Kittanning Leader-Times, April 14, 2008

The State System of Higher Education has approved two graduate degrees for Indiana University of Pennsylvania. The system’s Board of Governors authorized a doctorate in communications media and instructional technology and a master’s degree in applied archaeology at IUP. The doctoral degree will prepare students to become communications faculty members and communications leaders in business and industry. The master’s degree will help meet industry and government needs for professional archaeologists, especially in cultural resource management, historic preservation, public archaeology and heritage planning and tourism.

—“IUP Gets Approval for New Degree Programs,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 11, 2008

Work-study jobs offer advantages beyond the fiscal realm as well: They are designed to meet student needs. A job at the gym may allow for a salaried workout, for instance. Or a late-night job at the reference desk might allow students to do homework on the clock, a perk that brings a whole new meaning to ‘learning on the job.’ Craig Faish, a senior at Indiana University in Pennsylvania, would agree. Since last April, Faish, a criminology major, has worked as a dispatcher for campus police, collecting reports, running license plate numbers, responding to burglar alarms, and whatever else rings in. ‘I’m nosey and like to know what’s going on,’ explains Faish. ‘This way I hear whatever comes across the radio, and I get to know all the officers as well.’ The worst part of the job, Faish says, is the hours. He often works late into the night and notes with chagrin the time he had to work through homecoming. ‘I thought they would pay more for dishwashing,’ says Donovan Daniel, a junior at IUP, who spent a scant few hours wiping plates for minimum wage. ‘I quit the same day I started.’ Now Daniel works for the Office of Housing and Residence Life, which he likes much better, he says, since it tests his skills, both administrative and personal. ‘People are always coming in with ‘Oh my girlfriend broke up with me, or I got an F on this test, or I can't afford these sneakers,’’ he says. Another IUP student working in information technology says he likes fixing computers on campus because he gets to know all the freshmen who invariably come in with computer grievances.

—“Work-Study Can Help Keep Cash in Your Pockets,”
U.S. News & World Report, April 10, 2008

South Jersey college student is going to spend his summer vacation raising money for a worthy cause: cancer. But what sets Dan Esten's goal apart from so many other similar efforts is the length to which he's willing to go to achieve it. The 21-year-old Esten, a 2005 Cinnaminson High School graduate and Indiana University of Pennsylvania student, will bike 4,500 miles from Indiana, Pa., to Anchorage, Alaska. He and biking partner Michael Frederick, 22, will leave June 1 and travel along a route commonly called the ‘Northern Tier,’ which extends from Maine to Washington state. They’ll continue up the Western Canadian coast to their destination. The entire trip is expected to take close to three months.

—“Road Trip: 4,500 Miles, 2 Nations, 1 Goal,”
South Jersey (NJ) Courier-Post, April 9, 2008

Leaders at Indiana University of Pennsylvania had heard the horror stories: Students would be accepted here, visit the campus, take one look at the outdated dormitories, and decide to go someplace else. Something had to be done. So they made the bold move to replace all student housing, bed for bed — at a cost of $270-million. The public university has already begun tearing down its traditional dorms — think cinder blocks, communal bathrooms, earth tones — and is replacing them with swanky, apartment-style suites. In addition to meeting students’ demands for better amenities, Indiana is using the project to reinvent its living-and-learning program. Such programs, which have become popular on campuses across the country, are designed to increase student engagement by extending education beyond the classroom. Indiana’s effort is ambitious — one of the largest student-housing-replacement projects in the country, if not the largest. And it shows how far some colleges are willing to go — and how much they are prepared to spend — to attract and retain students who expect to be catered to. According to several experts, big improvements in student housing can indeed help with recruitment. ‘It’s fairly safe to say if facilities are fairly dreadful and students don’t want to live there, it will make a difference,’ says Richard A. Hasel, a founder of the Art and Science Group, a college-marketing company. The effort is crucial as the university tries to recruit more students at a time when western Pennsylvania expects a steady decline in the college-age population. ‘It really makes IUP more of a destination for students,’ says Tony Atwater, the university’s president. Mr. Atwater also hopes that the project will send a message to the Indiana area, which is slowly adjusting to an economy focused more on service and technology and less on manufacturing. ‘If IUP can do this — live its moniker of being ‘beyond expectations’ — then the community can,’ he says.

—“Swanky Suites, More Students,”
Chronicle of Higher Education, April 11, 2008

Dan Esten always loved a challenge. But who challenges themselves with a 4,500-mile bike trip from Indiana, Pa., to Anchorage, Alaska? The 2005 Cinnaminson High School graduate and current Indiana University of Pennsylvania student plans to hit the road June 1 along with classmate Michael Frederick of Punxsutawney, Pa. ‘We’re calling it the Tour for the Cure,’ Esten said. ‘We both lost loved ones to cancer, so we thought this would be a great way to raise money for the American Cancer Society.’ 

—“Bicyclist’s Goals: 4,500 Miles, $30,000 for Cancer,”
Burlington (NJ) Times, April 7, 2008

As professions go, motherhood can be a grind. The hours are brutal. The clientele can be tough to please. And, to top it all off, there's no way to know if you’re doing it right. ‘We need a conference,’ said Jen Primack, 38, of Squirrel Hill, a mother of two. ‘There’s no training for this motherhood thing.’ And so the Pittsburgh Conference on Mothering Studies was born. The event, held Sunday at Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Monroeville Center, invited a group of 32 women to share their experiences and expertise on parenting.  The result was an engaging combination of professional development, so to speak, and relaxation. Primack, the conference's coordinator, mixed workshop sessions on topics such as time management and health with 15-minute massages, lunch and yoga. ‘This is a lot more fun (than other conferences),’ said Robin Harper Cowie, 28, of West Mifflin, a businesswoman and mother of two who presented a session on cooking titled ‘No, Ice Cream Is Not A Vegetable.’ ‘It’s an incredible group of women.’  Participants, many of them in their 30s, represented a mix of ages and backgrounds, Primack said. Presentations were given by doctoral- and master’s-level experts, and the program was developed by Primack, who received her master’s degree from IUP’s Adult and Community Education program. While the mothers took part in the session, some fathers took children to set up tents for ‘day camping’ at Schenley Park in Oakland. A keynote address on future employment plans, titled ‘Plan Your Life and Create The Work You Love,’ was set to be delivered by psychotherapist Jan Carlino. Judi Rosen turned out to help her peers get in touch with their creativity. The sculptor and mother of two said she encourages women to be curious and express themselves. ‘It’s not really about making things,’ said Rosen, 43, of Squirrel Hill. ‘It’s about finding the moments and knowing what to do with them.’  

—“Event Helps Moms Raise Children and Be Themselves,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 7, 2008