News Release Archive
February 26, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Association of Educational Office Professionals (AEOP) will host its 40th annual workshop, Monday, March 17. The workshop, 'Live and Learnï¾…Pass It On,' is open to all educational office professionals.
Session topics include 'Growing Up Public-What Mom Didn't Teach Me' and 'The Reality of Remarkable,' given by Karel Murray, motivational humorist and trainer, of Waterloo; 'Knowing What You Want and Getting What You Need,' with Robin Gurien, training and career development coordinator, UNI Human Resources; 'Deal With It! Stress Management For a Busy Life,' with Gurien and Josh Susskind, UNI assistant professor of psychology; 'The Power of Choice,' with Penny O'Connor, UNI instructor of communication studies; 'What Is Your PR Pulse?' with Bob Justis, Cedar Falls chamber director; 'Creating Effective Power Point Presentations,' with Lynn Dykstra, instructor and AV director, Price Laboratory School; and 'Designing Web Pages,' with Jason Vetter, UNI educational technology specialist.
The registration fee for the workshop is $40. It includes all materials for the day and the luncheon. Participants may also earn one-half of one continuing education unit (CEU) by attending the entire day. CEU forms will be available at the workshop. The cost for the CEU credit is $10. Registration forms are due by March 1 to Karen Williams, PLS/UNI, 1901 Campus Street, Cedar Falls, Iowa 50614-3593. For more information, contact Karen Williams, president, UNI Association of Educational Office Professionals, at (319) 273-2220.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will participate in the nationally celebrated Women's History Month by featuring a number of on-campus events throughout the month of March. In addition to ongoing programming related to women's studies and gender issues, special activities have been planned.
Among special activities coordinated through the Women's Studies Program are:
- Women's Studies Spring Reception, from 3:30 to 5 p.m., Monday, March 3, in Baker Hall Room 161;
-Women's Studies Night at the Theatre UNI production of 'Roosters,' Friday, March 7, at the Strayer-Wood Theatre;
- A discussion by Women's Studies students and faculty of 'The Book That Changed My Life,' from noon to 1 p.m., Monday, March 10, in Baker Hall Room 161.
- 'From Bombs to Breast Cancer: Women and War Stories,' featuring Evelyne Accad, professor of French at the University of Illinois-Champaign, from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday, March 24, in Seerley Hall Room 115,
-'Report on the Status of Women in Iowa,' featuring UNI alumnae April Shaw, policy analyst with the Institute for Women's Policy Research, in Washington, D.C., from 3 to 5 p.m. in Baker Hall Room 161.
For additional information, contact Susan Hill, director, UNI Undergraduate Program in Women's Studies, (319) 273-7195.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- 'Mobilizing for Gender Justice: Implementation and Evaluation of the Mentors in Violence Prevention Model on the UNI Campus' will be the topic of the next CROW Forum lecture, at noon, Monday, March 3, in Baker Hall Room 161 on the University of Northern Iowa campus.
The presentation will be given by Annette Lynch, UNI associate professor of textiles and apparel; Michael Fleming, UNI assistant professor of family services; and Derrick Williams, UNI coordinator of SAVE mentors.
Admission is free and open to the public.
The CROW (Current Research on Women) Forum series is sponsored by UNI's Graduate Program in Women's Studies.
The series will continue on April 7 with 'Women in Business.'
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Department of Physics will host the UNI/Area Education Agency-7 Regional Physics Olympics in the UNI-Dome, from 9 a.m. to noon, Thursday, March 6.
Participating will be approximately 250 high school and middle school/junior high students from Cedar Falls, Waterloo, Dike, New Hartford, Jesup, Traer, Gilbertville, Gladbrook, Reinbeck, Dunkerton, Nashua, Plainfield, La Porte City, Dysart, Winthrop, Fairbank, Readlyn, Janesville, Sumner and other nearby areas.
According to Larry Escalada, UNI assistant professor of physics and science education, and the event coordinator, the contest features several events for which students work in teams to construct a self-propelled catapult, build a mouse-trap car, construct a toothpick bridge, develop a soda straw arm and make a human-powered water heater. All of these devices are to be constructed within given guidelines to complete desired tasks that test their understanding of physics principles.
The two school teams with the highest total scores will qualify for the state competition at the Drake University Olmsted Center in Des Moines on April 9. In addition, event team winners from non-team winning schools also will be invited to the state competition.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Center for Energy & Environmental Education (CEEE) continues its spring 2003 film and event series at 7 p.m., Thursday, March 6, in the Physics Building, Room 201.
The session 'Ready for Harvest: Clear-cutting in southern Appalachia,' will feature a documentary filmed in North Carolina that explores the interest of local people versus the interests of absentee corporations that cut and run. The session shows some similarities with the tension in Iowa communities over how hogs are raised. The film will be followed with a discussion.
The event is free and open to the public. The series will run through April 12. For more information, contact Kamyar Enshayan, staff member, UNI CEEE, at (319) 273-7575.
February 25, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's UNISTA (UNI Student Theatre Association), in conjunction with a world-wide peace campaign known as The Lysistrata Project, will present a staged reading of 'Lysistrata,' at 7:30 p.m., Monday, March 3, in the Kamerick Art Building, Room 111.
'Lysistrata,' is a play by the Greek dramatist, Aristophanes, who lived from about 447 to 385 B.C. It tells the story of a group of women from opposing states who unite to end the Peloponnesian War. The reading is being presented in an effort to stand up for peace and protest the war on Iraq, according to Jade Bettin, UNISTA board president. As of Feb. 21, Bettin said there were 620 readings planned in 38 countries.
Admission is free and open to the public.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- A new environmentally friendly rail-curve lubricant made from soybeans is in use on Norfolk Southern Railway, based in Norfolk, Va.
SoyTrakï¾™, a biodegradable soybean oil-based grease developed by the University of Northern Iowa's Ag-Based Industrial Lubricants (ABIL) Research Program, is being used as an alternative to petroleum-based grease for lubricating rails. The grease reduces rail gauge face-wear and wheel-flange wear when trains go around curves. Summer- and winter-grade blends are in use. An all-season blend is being developed.
'SoyTrak decomposes in a matter of weeks after application, so it's beneficial for the environment,' said Don Cregger, Norfolk Southern manager of project engineering. 'It's more efficient than petroleum grease in reducing wear.'
Norfolk Southern's Research and Test Department, ABIL and Portec Rail Products Inc., invested three years of research to ensure the grease's performance meets the demanding requirements of freight-service railroads.
Lou Honary, ABIL director, noted that during the past five years, more than 24 railroads have used SoyTrak ï¾™. 'But Norfolk Southern's approval gives new credibility to bio-based products.'
Norfolk Southern Corp. is one of America's leading transportation companies. Its Norfolk Southern Railway Company subsidiary operates approximately 21,500 miles of rail in the United States and Canada. Norfolk Southern operates the East's most extensive intermodal network and is the nation's largest rail carrier of automotive parts and finished vehicles.
Formulated from U.S.-grown soybean oils and additives, SoyTrak is produced by Environmental Lubricants Manufacturing in Waverly, Iowa, and distributed through Portec Rail Products Inc. Portec Rail Products contributed field equipment and developmental support during field-testing with Norfolk Southern.
Portec Rail has signed with Environmental Lubricants Manufacturing Inc. (ELM), in Waverly, Iowa, as the exclusive distributor of SoyTrak ï¾™. ELM is a partner in Portec Rail's 'Friction Force (SM)', an alliance of six rail industry organizations that serve rail and transit operators as a 'one-stop-shop' for wheel/rail interface solutions. SoyTrakï¾™ is now one of the Friction Force(SM) solutions.
Portec Rail has been involved in the development of rail lubrication and friction management technology since the late 1920s, and is the industry leader in this field.
ABIL is recognized nationally as a leader in the development and commercialization of soybean-based industrial lubricants. Established in 1991, the UNI-ABIL research program brings together research and testing to identify soybean oil characteristics and match them to appropriate industrial uses.
This year ABIL is licensing 24 industrial lubricants, greases and base oils made of soybean oil. For more information about ABlL, visit the Web site, www.uni.edu/abil.
February 24, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will host a Job and Internship Fair Tuesday, March 4, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., in the Maucker Union Expansion.
The fair will feature over 50 organizations representing business, human services and government sectors across the U.S. These organizations are seeking individuals from all academic fields for permanent employment or internships. Several employers will select students to interview during the Interview Day on Wednesday, March 5. Current UNI students and alumni are welcome to participate.
Among the organizations that will be represented at the fair are: CIGNA Corporation, Cambrex, Davenport Police Department, Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company, Lands End, Pella Corporation, Principal Financial Group, Target Stores and Von Maur.
According to Libby Vanderwall, UNI Career Center events coordinator, 'There is a nation-wide trend showing the number of employers attending career fairs is down by as much as half from previous years. UNI is fortunate to have sustained the employer interest of past years and continues to seek out new opportunities for our students.'
There are no pre-registration requirements for this free walk-in-event, but participants are encouraged to dress as if for an interview and to bring several copies of their resume. For a full listing of organizations that will be at the fair, visit the UNI Career Center home page at www.uni.edu/careercenter/
This event is sponsored by UNI Career Services.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa ï¾– High school jazz players from jazz bands throughout the state participated in the annual Tallcorn Jazz Festival, Friday and Saturday, Feb. 14-15, on the University of Northern Iowa campus.
The two-day event, held in conjunction with the UNI jazz program's 'Sinfonian Dimensions in Jazz' concerts, featured high school bands that competed in class divisions.
Award recipients in Class 4A were: Urbandale, first; Iowa City High, second; and Iowa City West, third. Class 4A second band recipients were: Urbandale II, first; Sioux City East II, second; and Cedar Falls II, third. Class 3A recipients were: Independence I, first; Hampton-Dumont (Hampton), second; and Independence II, third. In Class 2A the first place recipient was Jesup. Class 1A recipients were: Sigourney, first; Southeast Webster (Burnside), second; and Greene, third. The first place recipient in Class A was Cal-Dows (Latimer).
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- A spoof of Grant Wood's famous 'American Gothic,' the second in a series by Cedar Falls artist John Heidersbach, is being used on posters, flyers and brochures to promote the University of Northern Iowa's third annual Arts in April, a monthlong celebration of arts and culture.
Heidersbach, who holds a master's degree from UNI, created the piece that features a woman in a purple UNI apron holding a decorative mask, and man gripping a brightly painted guitar.
This image joins the piece he created to promote last year's celebration, a spoof of Leonardo da Vinci's 'Mona Lisa.'
The Arts in April celebration kicks off with a daylong festival March 29 in the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. The festival is supported in part by a grant from the Iowa Arts Council, KUNI Radio and KWWL-TV.
Arts in April grew out of UNI's 125th anniversary celebration in 2001 highlighting the many arts and cultural pursuits at UNI. In addition to the performing arts, UNI will host exhibits, lectures, films, family-centered events, observatory programs and special dining opportunities.
The complete Arts in April schedule is available on the Web at www.uni.edu/artsinapril .
(Part of the EducatioNet series from the University of Northern Iowa)
As the current pop princess Britney Spears undulates her way through one video after another, baring her impossibly flat tummy and twisting her narrow thighs, adolescent girls nationwide are trying to emulate that look. And it's not just her clothes or dance style they want to copy, but her body image as well. According to Diane Depken, assistant professor in the School of Health, Physical Education and Leisure Services at the University of Northern Iowa, girls as young as 8 years old are dieting, trying to maintain flat tummies, thin thighs and tiny waists.
Depken says American girls are reminded daily -- via television, magazines, catalogs and mannequins -- that the only way for them to achieve happiness is to achieve thinness. Only the thin women have fun, get boyfriends, get married or obtain good jobs.
'You might see some television commercials out there showing a woman with a larger body, but she's usually cleaning the toilet bowl,' says Depken. 'Girls learn early on that being a woman means worrying about your weight.'
Unfortunately, she continues, just about the same time they become vulnerable to the messages about being thing, young girls' bodies naturally try to put on fat. 'As adolescents, they blossom out before they blossom up.'
To combat that, many girls will resort to dieting, bulimia or anorexia. Bulimia is a pattern of binge eating and vomiting. Anorexic women refuse to eat much of anything, if at all.
'In both cases, the girls become absolutely preoccupied with food, and go through cycles of love and hate with it. It doesn't even correlate with how thin or fat they are. It's a cultural milieu.'
Depken and many professionals in her field suspect eating disorders are increasingly common among young girls.
Signs to watch for include:
'Chipmunk cheeks,' which occur from constant vomiting
Rapid loss of weight
Hoarding of food
Loss of shine in hair
Flushed face after visits to the restroom
Need to visit the restroom soon after eating
Rapid consumption of food (shoveling food into the mouth)
Dental problems (constant vomiting chips away at the protective enamel on teeth)
Parents or educators who suspect an eating disorder should seek professional help. Often girls who are approached view the intervention as hostile and will refuse to cooperate, or find a way to cover up the disorder.
'If you have to approach the girl yourself, do so with a feeling of love,' urges Depken. 'She has to know you care.'
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Scott Leisinger, former University of Northern Iowa director of athletic development, has been named vice president for development for the UNI Foundation. He began his new duties Feb. 17.
Leisinger, a Waverly native and 1987 graduate of Wartburg College, has served as Wartburg's director of development since 2000. Leisinger came to UNI in 1997 as the director of athletic development, serving until his departure in December of 1999. He had previously served as the University of Northern Colorado assistant athletic and sports information director. He received his master's degree from that institution in 1991.
Leisinger will oversee the coordination and implementation of all fundraising activities for the foundation, and serve as vice president for the UNI Foundation board of trustees.
The UNI Foundation is a 501 (c)3 organization established in 1959. Its mission is to sustain, grow and promote the university to be the nation's finest comprehensive university, known for high quality learning environments and a genuine sense of community.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Judy Shepard, whose son's 1998 murder was inspired by anti-gay hate, will be the fifth speaker in the 2002-2003 Hearst Lecture Series at the University of Northern Iowa. She will speak at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 5, in the Lang Hall Auditorium. Her address is free and open to the public.
Matthew was 21 at the time of his brutal murder, whose motive was attributed to his homosexuality. Determined not to let his fate befall others, Shepard and her husband, Dennis, established the Matthew Shepard Foundation, in their son's memory. Its main goals are to increase gay and lesbian equality and prevent hate crimes.
Judy Shepard speaks to audiences nationwide about what they can do to make their schools and communities safer for everyone, regardless of race, sex, religion or sexual preference. All proceeds from her speeches go to the Foundation.
A reception in the Lang Hall Lounge will follow Shepard's lecture.
The series is made possible through support by the Meryl Norton Hearst Chair in the College of Humanities and Fine Arts (CHFA), and created by an endowment from James Schell Hearst, author, poet and professor of creative writing at UNI from 1941 until his retirement in 1975.
CHFA, the Department of Communication Studies and the Department of Theatre are sponsoring Shepard's appearance.
February 23, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Students on the University of Northern Iowa's Individual Events Speech Team recently were finalists at the Bob Smith Invitational Speech Tournament held last month at Wartburg College, and at the Mid-American Forensic League Swing Tournament at Illinois State and Bradley Universities.
At the Wartburg Competition, the team placed third overall. Individually, Amy Larsen, a senior from Ankeny, placed fourth in dramatic duo along with junior Danielle Dick from Dayton. Larsen also placed fourth in program oral interpretation, while Dick placed fifth in that category. Matt Musgrave, a sophomore from Webster City, placed fourth in rhetorical criticism and sixth in informative speaking. Phil Rippke, a sophomore from Moville, placed fourth in extemporaneous speaking and seventh in persuasive speaking.
Sara Gronstal, a junior from Council Bluffs, placed first in after dinner speaking, and second in dramatic interpretation and informative speaking. Additionally, at the Mid-American Tournament, at Saturday's Illinois State events, Gronstal placed first in after dinner speaking, and fourth in informative speaking. At Sunday's Bradley events, Gronstal placed first in after dinner speaking, first in poetry interpretation, and fourth in dramatic interpretation.
For more information, contact Leah White, UNI director of forensics, (319) 273-7200.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Department of Earth Science will host a seminar on 'Bacteria at Iowa's Beaches,' at 4 p.m., Monday, March 3, in UNI's Latham Hall, Room 125.
Janice Boekhoff, research geologist with the Iowa Geological Survey, will discuss bacteria beach monitoring at Iowa's 35 state-owned beaches, including results from an intensive watershed investigation conducted in 2002 at George Wyth State Park Beach in Waterloo.
The next seminar features Jim Caldwell, a geologist from the U.S. Geological Survey, presenting 'The USGS in Iowa,' at 4 p.m. on Monday, April 7.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa ï¾– The University of Northern Iowa debate team recently attended the University of Missouri-Kansas City Debate Tournament and the Augustana College Debate Tournament.
At the Jan. 6-8 UM-KC Tournament, the duo of Kelsey Harr, a sophomore from Windsor Heights, and Brent Nichols, a freshman from Marshalltown, placed first in the novice debate division. Donnell Minton, a freshman from Kansas City, Mo. was the first place speaker in the junior varsity division of debate.
At the Jan. 24-26 Augustana College Tournament, the duo of Kelsey Harr and Joe Rankin, a senior from Dubuque, placed first in the novice debate division. Harr also received the first place speaker award and Rankin placed fifth. Mark Langgin, a junior from Ottumwa was the 10th place speaker in the varsity debate division. Kim Adams, a freshman from Des Moines placed third in the novice debate division. Adams debated with a partner from Augustana College.
For more information contact Leah White, UNI director of forensics, at (319) 273-7200.
February 20, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The St. Stephen Catholic Student Center will host a hunger banquet on March 1, from 6 to 8 p.m.. The purpose is to increase awareness about the great disparity in world food distribution and the millions of people who daily go under-fed.
The cost is $5. Proceeds go to El Faro Orphanage in Mexico. Tickets must be purchased in advance. Tickets can be picked up at St. Stephen's, located next to University Book & Supply, across from the UNI campus,or by contacting Ryan Hoffman, banquet committee chair, at (319) 222-5517, or email@example.com.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The Iowa Arts Council has given the University of Northern Iowa a $3,700 grant for the Arts in April Festival, a daylong event Saturday, March 29, in the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC). The festival is a prelude to UNI's monthlong Arts in April celebration of arts and culture.
The festival, designed to be 'free, fun and family-friendly,' will open at 10:30 a.m. and run into the evening. It will feature workshops and performances, designed for all ages, including theatre, music, dance, literature and the culinary and visual arts. In addition to a variety of free activities, there will be two ticketed events, a performance by UNI's International Dance Theatre and a Greg Brown benefit for KUNI Radio.
'In this time of tight budgets, for both the university and the Iowa Arts Council, this grant represents a vote of confidence for a new project,' said Cheryl Gaston, UNI assistant vice president for marketing and public relations.
Though this is the first year for a daylong festival, it is the third year for the monthlong event. Arts in April grew out of UNI's 125th anniversary celebration in 2001 highlighting the many arts and cultural pursuits at UNI. In addition to the performing arts, UNI will host exhibits, lectures, films, family-centered events, observatory programs and special dining opportunities. A complete Arts in April schedule is available on the Web at www.uni.edu/artsinapril.
The Arts in April Festival is supported in part by The Iowa Arts Council, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities; KUNI Radio; and, KWWL-TV.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa ï¾– The next session of 'Women on Fridays,' a discussion series offered by the University of Northern Iowa Women's Studies program, will be at noon, Friday, Feb. 28, in Baker 161. The focus will be on strategies for teaching and learning about gender in the Women's Studies classroom.
The program will continue, meeting the fourth Friday of each month. Topics and dates are:
Friday, March 28, 'What Can I do with a Degree in Women's Studies? -- Graduates Return.'
Friday, April 25, 'Women's Studies in the Community -- the Community Speaks.'
The discussions, said Susan Hill, director of the undergraduate program in Women's Studies, 'are about creating community through the exploration of the history and purpose of Women's Studies in the academy, at UNI and in our community.'
They are free and open to the public. Those attending should bring a lunch; dessert will be provided.
For more information, contact Susan Hill, director of the undergraduate program in Women's Studies, (319) 273-7177.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Human Nature, a touring theatre company based in northwest California, will present a three-person comedy review on the University of Northern Iowa campus at 7 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 27. 'What's Funny About Climate Change?' will be performed in Schindler Education Center, Room 246. It is free and open to the public.
The performance is sponsored by Student Pugwash UNI, the UNI Graduate Program in Public Policy, the UNI Recycle and Reuse Technology Transfer Center and the UNI Center for Energy and Environmental Education.
For more information, contact Kamyar Enshayan, staff member, UNI Center for Energy and Environmental Education, at (319) 273-7575.
February 19, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's 'Leaders on Leadership' series continues Thursday, Feb. 27, with a panel discussion on environmental leadership.
The event runs from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. in Room 246 of UNI's Schindler Education Center. Panelists will be David Larson of the Iowa Green Party; Chris Petersen, vice president of the Iowa Farmers Union; Leah Wilson, intern with the UNI Local Food Project; and Bill Witt, former state representative and now special projects assistant with UNI's Business and Community Services.
The 'Leaders on Leadership' series runs through April 24, and provides participants an opportunity to learn about the leadership views and practices of leaders from all levels of society. For more information, call Gerri Perreault, director of Leadership Studies at (319) 273-6898, or e-mail at YLA@UNI.edu.
February 18, 2003 - 6:00pm
(Part of the EducatioNet series from the University of Northern Iowa)
For release during February 2003
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Katherine van Wormer says society expects teenagers to be a little rebellious, a little moody, a little confused. Adolescence is, after all, a turbulent time. But gay, lesbian and transgendered teens have it '100 times worse.'
Van Wormer, a professor of social work at the University of Northern Iowa, and co-author of the textbook, 'Social Work with Lesbians, Gays, and Bisexuals: A Strengths Perspective,' explains homosexual students often are targeted by others for ridicule. Studies indicate that 90 percent of high school students in this country had heard anti-gay epithets at school, and 69 percent of gay teens reported verbal or physical harassment at school.
'The school system is largely a toxic environment for children with gender-role differences,' she says.
Further, says van Wormer, homosexual students typically don't have a built-in support system.
'You could compare them to an ethnic group, as an example, or a kid from a different economic background. When those students are teased or confronted about being different from their peer group, they can go home for reassurance. Gender non-conforming students usually can't do this.'
In fact, says van Wormer, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered teens rarely have anywhere to go for support. 'The problem is that those who are taunted the most generally lack protection from their families, teachers and religious leaders -- the usual support systems to which young people turn.'
The result is a high level of alcohol abuse to treat the depression that accompanies self-hatred, high use of narcotics, and high levels of suicide.
A 1991 study indicated that gender identity issues were the primary causes of suicide among all teens. Another study in the United Kingdom found that four out of 10 children bullied about their sexuality attempted suicide or harmed themselves by cutting or burning their skin.
'Peer, teacher and parental rejection often is internalized as self-hatred and self-destructive behavior by the victim of chronic abuse and name calling,' says van Wormer.
Researchers are finding that there may be other consequences that affect not just the depressed teenager, but also those around him.
'In this country, it took the Columbine tragedy -- where unpopular students who could not fit into the masculinized culture of their high school went on a murder-suicide rampage -- to finally spark a national debate on the culture of harassment and hatred that can lead to violence,' says van Wormer.
In this professor's mind, the only logical place to begin change is the school. 'These students can't count on parents or the church, so school is the only place left.'
There are several ways for that to happen, she says, but all of her suggestions mean a radical shift from the norm.
'First, we need out-of-the-closet role models in the school, someone who is happy with his or her identity. The problem with that, though, is a teacher can be fired for coming out of the closet because there are no laws that say otherwise.'
Van Wormer also suggests after-school groups, preferably led by an openly gay individual, to help cope with gender identity issues of all students. 'That would probably be horrifying for parents, at least at first,' she says. 'But what we've found is that once parents accept their child, they can be the greatest advocates.'
Her other suggestions for schools are:
Help institute programs to prevent bullying and verbal abuse.
Organize workshops on sexual orientation for student leaders, faculty and administrators.
Help organize and support gay/straight alliance groups.
Encourage panels featuring gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered students from nearby colleges.
Make sure the school library has information about gender non-conformity.
Maintain strict confidentiality in all services provided.
The 2002-2003 University of Northern Iowa Fact Book is available online at http://www.uni.edu/pubrel/uni-factbook.pdf
The Fact Book is a desk reference of university statistics. It is compiled by the UNI Office of Information Management Analysis. A bound version will be mailed to news directors and assignment editors education reporters within the next few days.
February 17, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Center for Multicultural Education will host a panel discussion on affirmative action, featuring attorney Shirley J. Wilcher, at 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 24, in UNI's Lang Hall Auditorium.
Wilcher is the executive director of Americans for a Fair Chance, an organization that serves as an educational resource for affirmative action and equal opportunity resources. She has more than 20 years of experience as civil rights counsel with the U.S. House of Representatives Education of Labor Committee. Wilcher received her master's degree from the New School for Social Research in New York, a law degree from the Harvard School of Law and a Certificate in French Language from the University of Paris, France.
The panel will include: Catherine Zeman, UNI assistant professor of health promotion and education; Susan Koch, UNI associate provost and associate vice president for academic affairs; Scharron A. Clayton, associate professor of philosophy and religion; Delano Cox, Hawkeye Community College evening campus manager; Denise Henning, former executive director of the Loras College intercultural programs office; R. Allen Hays, director of the UNI public policy graduate program; and Roberto Clemente, UNI assistant professor of education.
The event is sponsored by the UNI Center for Multicultural Education. It is free and open to the public.
February 16, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Theatre UNI will present the Hispanic-American drama, 'Roosters' Feb. 27 through March 9 at the Strayer-Wood Theatre. It will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 27 through March 1, and March 5 through 8; and 2 p.m. March 1, 2 and 9.
'Roosters' tells the story of conflict between a father and son when the father returns home after a long absence to reclaim his place as the head of the family.
The production is directed by guest artist Kim Hines, a professional actor, director and playwright from Minneapolis. She is an associate artist at Illusion Theater in Minneapolis, and a regular columnist for the Minnesota Women's Press. She is a recipient of Minnesota's prestigious Bush Artist Fellowship Award for playwrighting, the first female African-American Core Member of the Playwrights' Center, a member of the Actor's Equity Association and a past board member of Assitej, an international network of theatre for children and young people.
Theatre UNI's production of 'Roosters' features Scott Nice, UNI assistant professor of theatre, in the role of Gallo, the father, and a cast of nine students. Student cast members are: Jess C. White, Des Moines; Joanna Jordan, Iowa City; Gretchen Carter, Sioux City; Katie Sue Nicklos, La Junta, Colo.; Derek Johnson, Delhi; Jeff Johnson, Lake View; Ryan Wickham, Marshalltown; Rachelle Neuberger, Clear Lake; and Szymon Bogucki, Gdansk, Poland.
The production team includes scenic designer Mark A. Parrott, staff designer; lighting designer Eric Lange, UNI associate professor of theatre and acting department head; and costume designer Carmelita Guse, a theatre graduate student from Waterloo.
'Roosters' contains mature subject matter. Tickets are $10 for the general public; $8 for seniors, UNI faculty and staff; and $5 for youth under 18. Tickets may be purchased by calling the Strayer-Wood Theatre box office at (319) 273-6381, or online at www.uni.edu/theatre. The play is funded in part by the Martha Ellen Tye Guest Artist Fund.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- 'Modern Meat' will be the focus of the next University of Northern Iowa Center for Energy & Environmental Education (CEEE) spring series program at 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 24, in the Physics Building, Room 309.
The session will show a 'Frontline' investigation about American meat production, USDA meat inspection processes and overall control of the meat industry. The focus of the program is on the safety of the current meat supply.
The event is free and open to the public. The series will run through April 12. For more information, contact Kamyar Enshayan, a staff member at UNI's Center for Energy and Environmental Education, at (319) 273-7575.
Adolfo Franco, UNI alumnus and USAID assistant administrator for Latin American and the Caribbean, will not be on campus Tuesday, Feb. 18. His presentation was scheduled for 4:30 in the Curris Business Building. Inclement weather in Washington, D.C., has caused flight cancellations and Franco is unable to be in Iowa.
Franco also was scheduled to present Tuesday evening at UNI's Economics Department's Jepson Symposium; an alternate speaker is being lined up.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Students from the University of Northern Iowa have completed the fall 2002 session of Young Peoples Dance Theatre (YPDT). A self-supporting before and after school dance program, YPDT is offered at 10 local elementary schools to second-through fifth-grade boys and girls.
A minimum of two UNI practicum students lead the sessions at the schools, with a contact person, usually the principal, available at each school. UNI students participating in the program receive university credit through UNI's School of Health, Physical Education and Leisure Services.
UNI students who participated during the fall 2002 session include: ___NAME___, a ___CLASSIFICATION/MAJOR___, from ___HOMETOWN___.
The YPDT program offers opportunities to learn, rehearse and perform various dance forms. The emphasis is on creative dance and international folk dance with an exposure to other dance forms such as social dance, jazz, ballet, tap and modern dance.
The practicum students meet once a week as a class with Cynthia Herndon, UNI associate professor of physical education and the faculty member in charge of the program. During the weekly session, students are introduced to a creative approach to teaching dance, learn dances to teach the children and share their teaching tips.
Note: to obtain a list of the students, please contact the Office of University Marketig and Public Relations at 319.273.2761.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa --The University of Northern Iowa's 'Leaders on Leadership' series continues Thursday, Feb. 20, with a panel discussion on government leadership.
The event runs from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. in Room 246 of UNI's Schindler Education Center. Panelists will be Jon Crews, mayor of Cedar Falls; Emiliano Lerda, vice president of the Northern Iowa Student Government; Leon Mosley, member, Black Hawk Counter Board of Supervisors; and George Stigler, Iowa district court judge.
The 'Leaders on Leadership' series runs through April 24, and provides participants an opportunity to learn about the leadership views and practices of leaders from all levels of society. For more information, call Gerri Perreault, director of Leadership Studies at (319) 273-6898, or e-mail at YLA@UNI.edu.
February 13, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- UNI alumnus, Adolfo Franco Jr., U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) assistant administrator for Latin America and the Caribbean, is the keynote speaker for the University of Northern Iowa's Economics Department's 19th annual Jepson Symposium, Tuesday, Feb. 18.
USAID is the government agency that administers economic and humanitarian assistance worldwide.
Born in Cardenas, Cuba, Franco and his family moved to Cedar Falls in 1965. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees in history from the University of Northern Iowa. His law degree is from Creighton University School of Law. Franco is one of the highest-ranking Hispanic-Americans in the Bush administration.
The Jepson Symposium is funded by the Lawrence M. Jepson endowment to support activities in international economics. The symposium is by invitation only.
February 12, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- 'Images of ordinary people in Iran,' a slide show and discussion, will be presented Tuesday, Feb. 18, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in the University of Northern Iowa's Sabin Hall, Room 103.
Kamyar Enshayan, a staff member at UNI's Center for Energy & Environmental Education, is an Iranian-American who will show slides of his life growing up in Iran. He said his purpose is to help people see ordinary daily life in Iran and the interaction of parents and children. He said this is in contrast to the country being identified as part of the 'Axis of Evil.'
The program is sponsored by the UNI Graduate Program in Public Policy. For more information, contact Enshayan, at (319) 273-7575.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Inter-American Studies Program will present the third film in its five-film series, 'The Battle of Chile ï¾– Part II, 'the Coup D'Etat',' at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 18.
The film is part of a series that chronicles the history of Salvador Allende's Unidad Popular government. Part II documents the historical events of Sept. 11, 1973, when General Augusto Pinochet overthrew Allende's government in a bloody military coup. The film is still banned in Chile.
The series is in its seventh year, and presents films every Tuesday evening from Feb. 4 to March 4 in Seerley Hall, Room 115. The films are sponsored by Inter-American studies, the dean of the College of Humanities and Fine Arts, and the Department of Modern Languages. The series is free and open to the public.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa --The University of Northern Iowa Minority Graduate Student Association (MGSA), is commemorating Black History Month through a variety of campus activities Feb. 17-23.
Black History Month celebrations will kick off on Monday, Feb. 17 with the Black History Television series, 'Eye on the prize,' at Maucker Union, Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 18 -- Black history 'food for thought' facts and historical information will be distributed in Maucker Union from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 19 -- Casual 'Chat and Chew' discussion about black history, in Maucker Union from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Participants should bring their own lunch.
Thursday, Feb. 20 -- Black history panel discussion on 'Events in Black America.' 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Maucker Union Hemisphere Lounge.
Friday, Feb. 21 -- Open mic, poetry and jazz night will feature volunteer performers and the UNI Jazz Band. Participants may read original or published works, sing or read. Sign-up is at 6:15 p.m. The show begins at 7 p.m. in Maucker Union, Expansion A.
Saturday, Feb. 22 -- Comedy show, 8 p.m. in Lang Hall auditorium. The show is free, open to the public, and co-sponsored by the UNI entertainment committee. Immediately following the show there will be a party and dance in Maucker Union Expansion A until 2 a.m. Admission is $5.
Sunday, Feb. 23 -- 10:30 a.m. worship service at the Gift of Life Ministries Church, 1651 Sycamore St. in Waterloo.
All events are free and open to the public except the Saturday evening 'after party' and dance.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- 'Elvis as Cultural Bridge: Signifying in American Popular Music' will be the topic for the University of Northern Iowa's history lecture series at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 19, in Seerley Hall, Room 115. The lecture will be presented by John Baskerville, UNI assistant professor of history.
The series is sponsored by the UNI Department of History and the Phi Alpha Theta history honor society. Admission is free and open to the public.
February 11, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Two University of Northern Iowa students took first place at the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) District Competition held in November at Wartburg College in Waverly.
Lynelle Keeney, senior vocal performance major from Burlington, and daughter of Bruce and Becky Keeney, was the first place winner in the Division III-A senior women's competition, and Sarah Carlson, sophomore vocal performance major from Rockwell City, and daughter of Thomas and Nancy Carlson, was the first place winner in the Division III-A sophomore women's competition.
Keeney's performance piece was 'Salce, salce' from Verdi's Otello. Her vocal instructor is Leslie Morgan, UNI associate professor of music. Carlson performed three pieces including 'Quando m'en Vo' by Puccini, 'The Road to Avrille' by Lekberg and 'Apres un Reve' by Faure. Her vocal instructor is Jean McDonald, UNI associate professor of music.
Nearly 40 students competed against Keeney and Carlson in each of their divisions.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Three University of Northern Iowa students and one faculty member were recognized at the Region V Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival recently held on the UNI campus.
Katie Sue Nicklos, a graduate theatre major from La Junta, Colo., received second place in graduate costume design for her designs for the play 'Skryker.' Brad Carlson, a senior theatre major from Cedar Falls, received second place in undergraduate scenic design for his design of 'Slaughter City.' Carlson also received the honor at last year's festival for his design of 'The Tale of the Red Dragon.' Laura Buresh, a senior communication and theatre education major from Cedar Rapids, received a meritorious achievement certificate for her work as stage manager for 'Angels in America, Part I.'
A meritorious achievement certificate was also presented to Cynthia Goatley, UNI associate professor of theatre, for her direction of 'The Laramie Project.'
This year's festival, hosted by Theatre UNI and the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, was attended by more than 1,400 students, a record number for the festival.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The next film in the University of Northern Iowa's 'Reel to Real' film series will be 'Beautiful Piggies,' a revealing self-portrait of an overeater. It follows Barbara, the video maker, from her seemingly cheerful childhood through her metamorphosis into a five foot tall, one hundred seventy-five pound conflicted woman. The film will be shown from noon to 1 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 19, in the Maucker Union University Room South.
Guy Sims, associate director of Maucker Union, said the film is part of the yearlong Reel to Real film series that presents films worthy of reflection, discussion, challenge and criticism.
The series, sponsored by the Maucker Union Student Activities office, will continue March 26, with 'Beauty in the Bricks,' a film that explores the lives of black teenage girls growing up in a housing project.
The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Guy Sims at (319) 273-2683.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's Price Laboratory School (PLS) will offer its second Teacher Institute to teacher education students Friday, Feb. 21, at the school.
Sessions will be offered on topics ranging from classroom motivation and management to suggested projects for classes in all subject areas. The program is designed to enrich the experience of UNI teacher education students.
According to Nadene Davidson, interim director of PLS, 'Last year PLS faculty made 119 state, national and international professional presentations and held 53 offices or leadership positions in professional organizations. The Teacher Institute provides an opportunity for the teacher education students to see the scholarly projects and expertise of the PLS faculty beyond their classroom participation experiences.'
Lee Weber, PLS Teacher Institute chair, added that there is a second benefit for UNI teacher education students. 'We hope that, in addition to gaining exposure to outstanding professional presentations, the UNI teacher education students will begin to see the value of continued professional development and attendance at professional conferences after they begin their teaching careers.'
The Teacher Institute is offered at no cost to participants. For additional information, visit www.pls.uni.edu/pls/teacher_institute.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will host educators from around the world at the 27th annual UNI Overseas Recruiting Fair at the Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center in Waterloo, Friday through Sunday, Feb. 21-23.
The oldest recruiting event of its kind in the world, last year the fair attracted more than 120 American international schools representing 65 countries and 570 teaching candidates. The UNI Overseas Recruiting Fair gives elementary and secondary educators the opportunity to meet and interview with international schools. Most schools that attend are affiliated with American embassies worldwide. This year, more than 120 schools and 600 teachers are expected. Pre-registration is required.
'In a time of great uncertainty in our changing world, it is remarkable to experience such a true commitment to teaching and learning,' said Tracey Roling, assistant director of education career services with the UNI Career Center. 'The UNI Career Center's Overseas Placement Service has served nearly 17,000 educators since we began the Fair in 1976.'
For more information, contact Roling at (319) 273-2083, or visit www.uni.edu/placement/overseas.
February 10, 2003 - 6:00pm
Through several events, UNI representatives will be at the Capitol. Those events and the individuals who can best address them, are listed.
The Northern Iowa Student Government (NISG), led by President Jeff Scudder, has organized a series of lobbying efforts for the spring semester. They are:
Wednesday, Feb. 12: Cedar Valley Day at the Capitol, Embassy Suites in Des Moines, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
(Planning van trip with 7-15 students.)
Saturday, Feb. 15, legislative forum at AEA-7 in Cedar Falls, 10 a.m. to noon.
Monday, Feb. 17, NISG meeting with student governments of Iowa State University and the University
of Iowa, State Capitol noon.
Wednesday, March 5, Regents Student Rally, State Capitol, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
(Goal is to have charter bus with 50+ students.)
Friday, March 7, legislative forum at AEA-7 in Cedar Falls, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 29, legislative forum at AEA-7 in Cedar Falls, 10 a.m. to noon.
Saturday, April 5, legislative forum at AEA-7 in Cedar Falls, 10 a.m. to noon.
Lou Honary, director of UNI Ag-Based Industrial Lubricants research program, will make a presentation to the House Ag Appropriations Committee at 10:30 am., and the Senate Agricultural Committee at 11:30 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 13.
Honary will highlight the three business transitions key to understanding ABIL's growth, ending with the development of 25 industrial soybean-based products, four base oils and a viscosity modifier -- each licensed to market.
Also speaking will be Blake Hollis, owner/operator of Lanehaven Farms in Northeast Iowa, and manager of a soy pilot plant production site. He will discuss the USDA on-farm processing/manufacturing project, awarded to ABIL in 2000, that created three production pilot plants on local farms and one cooperative. During the course of this project, these pilot plants were provided an outlet for soybean oil, and established grease-processing procedures, capacities and capital requirements for production.
February 9, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa ï¾– Two print exhibitions, 'Propinquity' and 'Demographics,' will be presented by the University of Northern Iowa Gallery of Art, from Monday, Feb. 17, through Monday, March 10. The opening reception for both exhibitions will be at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 18, following a 6:30 p.m. lecture in the Kamerick Art Building Auditorium, Room 111, by printmaker Beth Grabowski.
Grabowski, whose works are featured in 'Propinquity,' is professor of art and associate chair for studio art at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her lecture is supported by the Martha Ellen Tye Visiting Artist/Scholar Series. Grabowski says her art 'explores the concepts of communication and interpretation in the complex and exasperating realm of human interaction.'
'Demographics' is the collaborative work of eight different printmakers, including Tim Dooley, UNI assistant professor of art, created during the spring of 2002 at the Southern Graphics Council Conference in Louisiana.
The exhibitions, lecture and reception are free and open to the public.
Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Thursday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday; and, noon to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The UNI Gallery of Art is located at the corner of Hudson Road and West 27th Street, on the main floor of the Kamerick Art Building. For more information, call (3129) 273-3095, or visit its Web site at www.uni.edu/artdept/gallery.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will host its Camp and Recreation Fair Wednesday, Feb. 12, from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. in the Maucker Union Expansion. The event is free and sponsored by the UNI Career Center.
The fair will feature employers from 55 camps, resorts and amusement parks across the United States, all recruiting summer employees for a variety of positions.
Among the organizations represented are Valley Fair, Wisconsin Badger Camp and BUNAC, (British Universities North America Club), an organization that specializes in placing students in camps all over the world.
For a list of recruiting organizations and more information visit www.uni.edu/careercenter.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Students, faculty and staff from the University of Northern Iowa traveled to Las Vegas, Jan. 2-4 to attend the American Humanics Management Institute, a nonprofit management education conference.
The annual Management Institute conference exposes juniors and seniors to experiences they will encounter as youth and human service agency professionals. Representatives from UNI participated in a simulated case study and attended workshops.
UNI students who participated in the conference were ___NAME___, a ___CLASSIFICATION/MAJOR___, from ___HOMETOWN___.
Gordon Mack, executive director, UNI American Humanics program, will serve as a member of the national advisory council for the 2004 conference and as associate dean of the 2004 Management Institute. In addition, the UNI American Humanics student association won the Excellence in Student Recruiting Award, given to the best recruiting program for the 2002-2003 academic year.
Note: to obtain a listing of the students, please contact the Office of University Marketing and Public Relations at 319.273-2761.
February 6, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa --The 52nd annual 'Sinfonian Dimensions in Jazz' concerts and the related Tallcorn Jazz Festival will take place Friday and Saturday, Feb. 14-15, on the University of Northern Iowa campus.
The 'Sinfonian Dimensions' concerts will take place at 7:30 p.m., Feb. 14 and 15 in the Great Hall of the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC). Featured will be UNI's Jazz Band One, under the direction of Chris Merz, assistant professor of music. A concert, featuring Jazz Band Two, under the direction of Robert Washut, professor of music, will precede the concert.
Guest soloist performing with Jazz Band One will be trombonist Ray Anderson of New York City. Named 'best trombonist' in Downbeat Magazine's critic's poll for five consecutive years, Anderson will host two clinics during each day of the festival at noon in Room 60 of Russell Hall. The clinics are free and open to the public.
Hosted by UNI's Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia music fraternity, the 48th annual Tallcorn Jazz Festival will draw approximately 1,300 high school students to the UNI campus for jazz performance competitions. An awards ceremony will follow the competitions in the GBPAC. The first-place band in each class can qualify for a possible wild card spot in the Iowa Jazz Championship.
Tallcorn Festival committee members are Nathan Dishman of Charles City, program chairman; and Kyle Novak of Cedar Rapids, festival coordinator.
'Sinfonian Dimensions in Jazz' tickets are $5 and may be purchased by calling (319) 273-SHOW (7469), or at the door.
February 5, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa --The University of Northern Iowa's 'Leaders on Leadership' series continues Thursday, Feb. 13, with a workshop presented by Greg Buntz, executive director of the Iowa peace Institute.
His session, titled 'Peace-Making For Leaders,' begins at 3:30 p.m. in Room 246 of UNI's Schindler Education Center. The event is free and open to the public.
The 'Leaders on Leadership' series runs through April 24, and provide participants an opportunity to learn about the leadership views and practices of leaders from all levels of society. For more information, call Gerri Perreault, director of Leadership Studies at (319) 273-6898, or e-mail at YLA@UNI.edu.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Theatre UNI's Off-Hudson series of staged readings continues on Tuesday, Feb. 11. Naomi Wallace's 'In the Heart of America' will be read at 7:30 p.m. in Room 108 of the Communication Arts Center.
The play, directed by Cynthia Goatley, UNI associate professor of theatre, tells of a young gay man who enlists in the military and is killed while serving his country.
The reading is free and open to the public. For more information call (319) 273-6387.
February 4, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Spring semester enrollment at the University of Northern Iowa shows 13,017 students registered for classes, according to UNI Registrar Phil Patton. The total is a decrease of 184 students, or 1.4 percent, from the 2002 spring record enrollment of 13,201.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Fourteen members of the University of Northern Iowa's Greek community have been inducted into the National Order of Omega Greek honor society. Order of Omega recognizes fraternity and sorority members for outstanding dedication to the university and the Greek community, leadership and academic skills. Members must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.
Among the fourteen inductees was (NAME), a (MAJOR) major from (HOMETOWN) and a member of (GREEK AFFILIATION).
Note: to obtain a listing of the students, please contact the Office of Univeristy Marketing and Public Relations at 319.273.2761.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Eric Lange, associate professor of theatre at the University of Northern Iowa, has been named acting head of the Department of Theatre.
Lange replaces Stephen Taft, associate professor of theatre, who recently resigned to become coordinator of special projects, grants and contracts in the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. Both men began their new duties Jan. 1.
Lange joined the university faculty in 1995. He holds a B.A. from Trinity University in San Antonio, and an MFA in technical theatre production from Temple University in Philadelphia. Before coming to UNI, he was staff technical director at Vanderbilt University in Nashville.
In 1989, Charles Pugh, then a university custodian, enrolled in a single course at UNI. 'I just wanted to see if I could do it,' he recalls now. The B- he received at the end of the semester was all the proof he needed; the next semester he took two courses. 'I thought, 'whoa! I think I can do this.' Sometimes he'd take as many as 12 hours at a time, while he continued to work full time as custodian.
In the meantime, his wife of 20 years died from a pulmonary embolism, leaving behind three daughters. 'But I kept going. I had to. I needed to show my daughters that a person can accomplish anything he puts his mind to.'
Pugh graduated in 1997 with a degree in social behavioral science and the hope of working as a youth shelter assistant, but couldn't find a job. So he continued working as a custodian, but also began taking graduate courses at UNI. He received his master's in May 2000, yet was still unable to find full-time employment in the Cedar Valley. He worked as a part-time computer lab teacher for the Waterloo School District, as he continued his custodial duties at UNI.
In December 2002, he learned of an assistant technical director position opening in the UNI School of Music. He applied and was hired. 'It was a difficult road,' he says. 'But I learned that you can never give up on your goals. I learned to think positively, even on the negative days.'