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Special Topics in Field Geology
Their textbook was Lake Michigan.
And for the group of Bloomsburg University students who spent two weeks this summer in the field exploring different geoscience and environmental aspects of the Michigan Basin, they wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.
“My biggest take away is the picture this trip painted for me,” said Mitchell Lenker, a junior geology major, professional track. “I have learned so much in the classroom. This however only goes so far for someone's understanding of the topics at hand. This trip helped tie the topics in the classroom into real world applications.”
The unique summer course, Special Topics in Field Geology, was led by faculty Matt Ricker, Jen Whisner and Chris Whisner, of the Department of Environmental, Geographical and Geological Sciences faculty. During their two-week field experience students learned field study techniques and how to analyze field observations that culminated in student-directed field presentations.
“The experiences on this trip were once-in-a-lifetime opportunities,” Lenker said. “Getting to be in the field with a professor for one day is one thing, but being about to spend two full weeks with three amazing professors you not only gain great field skills, you also make some pretty great friends and connections that could help you in the future.”
CLE brings Alex's Lemonade Stand to campus
What’s more refreshing than ice cold lemonade?
You could say raising nearly $300 in two days to help support the fight against pediatric cancer. And that’s exactly what Bloomsburg University’s Center for Leadership and Engagement recently did with the help of the Presidential Leadership Program.
Inspired by the touching story of Alexandra Scott, the students held an Alex’s Lemonade Stand (ALS) fundraiser, co-sponsored by the Colleges Against Cancer, on the Quad selling cups of lemonade for $1. Proceeds from the two-day sale benefitted the ALS Foundation, which helps fund critically needed research to find better treatments and cures for childhood cancer.
According to Bailey E. Donato, of CLE and coordinator of the lemonade stand fundraiser, one of the most memorable moments of the fundraiser was an anonymous gentleman who donated $100, encouraging the group to hand out free lemonade to everyone passing by.
Color Run sets pace for spring's Relay for Life
Bloomsburg University’s Colleges Against Cancer chapter recently raised more than $2,800 with its annual “Color your World with Hope” 5K Color Run at the Bloomsburg Town Park.
The goal of this event is to raise money and awareness of cancer on campus and throughout the community. It is also a precursor for the annual Relay for Life that takes place in the spring — this year, April 9, 2017.
The color run is a 5K run where participants will get color powder thrown on them as they complete the course. There are six stations and each station is a different color. The colors are affiliated with different months of the year that represent different types of cancer. This is the third year the Color Run organized by Colleges Against Cancer has happened at BU. Last year, the chapter had approximately 500 participates and raised more than $4,000. Chair of the Color Run, senior Sofia Rosen, hopes to raise within the same amount of money this year.
“This event is the start to raising money for the Relay for Life in the spring,” said Rosen.
Research on religion and politics wins Goorha award
Looking at the current political landscape Justice Powlus has wondered many things, such as what makes people think gender discrimination is okay and is there commonality amongst these people?
The topic struck a chord, so the Bloomsburg University political science major researched it. And in fact, he won an award for it.
“Even though America has some belief in separation of church and state, it does not always seem to be entirely true,” said Powlus, who recently won the Prateek Goorha Best Research Paper Award for his research on whether religious attendance correlates to individual’s outlook on a number of gender issues, including abortion and domestic violence. “This paper seeks to explore if there is a correlation between a person’s religiousness, more specifically, the person’s religious attendance, and an assortment of gender related issues within today’s American society.”
His research award includes a $500 scholarship made possible by Prateek Goorha, a former BU professor who made a generous contribution to the Department of Political Science in support of undergraduate research. The political science department selects the best research methods paper out of the research papers submitted in Research in Political Science course every semester.
“I chose political science as my major, because I hoped it would broaden my understanding of the U.S. legal system and government,” said Powlus, adding that majoring in political science is getting him a step closer to law school.
9/11 tragedy inspires research path
Although just 6 years old at the time, Sept. 11, 2001 is a day Elizabeth Miller can never forget.
Her father, a firefighter with the FDNY Rescue Engine Co. 5 in Staten Island, was among the 343 firefighters who died responding to the World Trade Center terrorist attacks. The tragedy not only left a lasting impact on her life but shaped her academic interests she holds to this day, including a research focus on Islamic fundamentalism and terrorism.
“I decided to look at the United States policies that shaped some of the grievances that Bin Laden had, like the stationing of troops in Saudi Arabia,” said Miller, who served on two panels last week at the Liberal Arts Symposium. “Basically, looking at what the United States was doing in the regions of the Middle East that Bin Laden spoke out about in his religious opinions.”
Duo has research published in Mathematics Magazine
Devyn Lesher, a junior mathematics major, and Chris Lynd, professor of mathematical and digital sciences, recently had their research paper accepted for publication in Mathematics Magazine — a widely read, peer-reviewed journal. The paper is titled Convergence Results for the Class of Periodic Left Nested Radicals and it should be in print in the December 2016 issue of Mathematics Magazine.
This research was made possible by two Undergraduate Research Scholarship and Creative Activities (URSCA) Awards from the Center for Undergraduate Research at Bloomsburg University. These awards provided stipends support for Devyn during the summer of 2014 and the summer of 2015.
During that time, Lesher learned about an area of mathematics that is rarely taught in an undergraduate program. He used his programming skills to perform computer simulations, discover patterns, and make conjectures about his mathematical patterns. Once the mathematical conjectures were formalized, Lesher got to see first-hand how to construct mathematical proofs, how to write a formal research paper in mathematics, and how to submit a paper for publication.
Competitive internship in NYC leads to return offer
Landing an internship with UnitedHealth Group, the largest private health insurer in the world, is no easy task. Out of 8,000 applicants only 25 are chosen to spend the summer in New York City with the Fortune 500 company.
Brett Logan, a senior computer science major, was one of them.
“Not only was the culture a perfect fit for me, but my interviewer sealed the deal for me,” said Logan, who worked specifically with Optum Technologies, UnitedHealth Group’s technology subsidiary. “I was fortunate that he would later be my boss for the summer.”
During the internship, Logan worked on an internal project to reduce development time of new software written in COBOL, computer-programming language designed for use in commerce. Logan said Bloomsburg University’s computer science program provided him with everything he needed to excel at the internship, including some software he previously written in class.
“I was able to adapt extremely quickly to the new languages,” Logan said. “Some of the software I wrote in class actually became the basis for a major part of the server environment in the search engine.”
Study abroad sets table for research
Lydia Stebbins’s research has already taken her through the quaint food markets of culturally rich Xalapa, Mexico, and will soon go global again — this spring into another cultural hub, Morocco.
Bloomsburg University’s study abroad programs have not only provided a basis for her research on the “impact of socioeconomic globalization on local markets” but have given the anthropology major an added marketability for her future.
“(Studying abroad) helped set me apart with my language abilities and how I look on job applications,” said Stebbins, who will discuss her summer experience and research on Friday, Oct. 14, at the Liberal Arts Symposium as part of two different panels.
Stebbins, a Wymer and Warner anthropology scholar and URSCA award winner, studied Spanish and the Mexican culture this past summer at the Universidad Veracruzana-Xalapa. Her research was done through subtle observation, investigating local perceptions of the effects of global supermarkets on traditional markets, the economy, health, and culture.
Ready to study abroad? As early as winter session!
Opportunities to study abroad are plentiful, providing a chance to tour exotic cities as well as study in a multicultural environment for credit. Bloomsburg University’s Office of Global and Multicultural Education offer a number of faculty-led study abroad trips for the winter and summer sessions from Spain to Norway to Morocco.
In the winter term, travel to Spain for an experience like no other as you learn about the history of Madrid and Toledo, enjoy a day at the beach in Barcelona and better your Spanish through this cultural immersion.
The summer session offers a number of trips led by faculty all over Europe. In London, England students’ exposure to the arts comes from visiting museums, plays, touring London and even a trip to Shakespeare’s home. Or travel to beautiful Italy for a unique practicum for Education majors. The College of Education is facilitating a trip to Reggio Emilia, Italy to allow students a teaching experience in a whole new element all while touring Venice and Rome.
Finally, in the summer, study abroad in Norway to explore the stunning landscapes and cultural history Norway has to offer. Or experience Morocco fully by staying with a host family, riding camels through the Sahara Desert and learning Arabic at your own pace.
Professor helps select Fulbright scholars
Faith Warner, anthropology professor at Bloomsburg University, has been selected to serve a three-year term on the U.S. Student Fulbright National Screening Committee. Warner received a Fulbright award in 1995 to conduct research with the Guatemalan Maya peoples in United Nations-sponsored Mexican refugee camps. She spent 22 months conducting field work, and she credits the Fulbright award, which paid for half of her research experience, with enabling her to finish her doctoral dissertation.
The screening committee reviews and rates approximately 60 to 75 applications from students wishing to pursue study, research or professional training abroad under the Fulbright-Hays Program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. Warner will help to select students for Fulbright awards to conduct research in Mexico.
“The process is very selective,” Warner said, “and is based on a detailed application, academic record, quality of the research proposal, and fluency in the native language.”
A Bloomsburg University faculty member since 1997, Warner earned a bachelor’s degree from BU and master’s and doctoral degrees from Syracuse University. Her honors include the Charles R. Jenkins Award for distinguished achievement from Lambda Alpha, the national collegiate honors society in anthropology, and the Roscoe Martin Award for dissertation research from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University.
“Being named a Fulbright scholar positively impacts a student’s confidence and provides financial aid. It changes your perception of yourself and affirms the quality of the work you are pursuing,” Warner said. “As a graduate student, it was an affirmation of my work as a scholar and my greatest encouragement.”
Solo student show at Greenly Center
Featuring works by recent graduate Kassandra Stachowski and senior Katie Starliper, Bloomsburg University’s Department of Art and Art History has opened its first student solo show that will run from through Oct. 27 in BU’s Gallery at Greenly Center. The show is free and open to the public.
Stachowski’s show, “Deep Haze,” features work influenced by her studies in fiber, theater and anthropology as a reflection of her life in the larger world. A Plains native, she earned bachelor’s degrees in anthropology and art studio, with a minor in theater arts, in 2015. Starliper’s show, “1000 Words,” focuses on the relationship between art and text with many pieces acting as visual poems. Starliper is a senior from Pottstown majoring in art studio and English.
These two separately themed exhibitions are a part of the new student solo show initiative developed to exhibit outstanding undergraduate work and juried by BU faculty. A faculty committee selected each artist based on aesthetic merit and the student’s goals for curating a show. A student solo show is planned for each fall and spring to provide professional experience and opportunities for dialogues on art within the community.
ROTC cadet completes intensive abroad program
Army ROTC cadet Laura Albright, a history major, completed an intensive Russian language program this past summer at University of North Georgia in Dahlonega, Georgia. Albright received a full scholarship to complete this course by Project Go, an initiative created by the Department of Defense to teach military cadets across the country critical languages such as Russian, Chinese, and Arabic.
According to Albright, the class consisted of 15 students, along with two tutors, and one professor from Russia, that had lived in America several years. The program was only six-weeks long, but it was incredibly rigorous.
“Every weekday, class started at 0830 and ended at 2000; there were only breaks for lunch, dinner, and tutoring. At night, we completed homework and studied for daily quizzes” Albright explained. “The workload was tough, but manageable.”
Saturday’s were spent learning more about the Russian Culture, including traditional dishes, dances, and classic Russian films.
“One Saturday, our class went on a field trip to the suburbs of Atlanta. First, we visited a Russian Orthodox Church and learned about their traditions and practices,” Albright said. “Then, we went to a nursing home for elderly Russian people. Lastly, on the field trip we went to a market with authentic Russian cuisine. There, my friends and I purchased and cooked пельнянь (pelmeni), which are similar to dumplings.”
To complete the program, the students were required to take the Oral Proficiency Interview test to measure their ability to listen, understand, and respond in Russian.
‘Junk Space’ exhibit comes to campus
Contemporary painter Brady Haston will bring his latest work to the exhibition, “Junk Space” opening at Bloomsburg University’s Haas Gallery of Art on Wednesday, Oct. 5. This event is free and open to the public.
Haston lives and teaches in Nashville, Tenn. where his work has been influenced by the city. His work, primarily contemporary abstract paintings, focuses on superficial and casual observations of Nashville in relation to exploring references of the past and future.
Haston received his Bachelors of Fine Arts from Middle Tennessee State University and his Master of Fine Arts at Montana State University. He is an associate professor at the Watkins College of Art and Design in Nashville where he has been awarded the Professional Development Grant six times. His work has been featured in solo and group exhibitions in major cities across the country including Chicago, Nashville and New York for the past 18 years. His work is often exhibited at the Zeitgeist in Nashville.
Is the Air Force in your future?
Due to the shortage of USAF officers over the next two years, AFROTC is now instituting an unprecedented nation-wide new 18 month accelerated AFROTC program for college seniors and graduate students. Students completing the program will have a guaranteed full-time career as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Air Force in a field of their choosing.
Students enrolled in this program will receive a tax free stipend of $450 per month for the first semester, then $500 per month for subsequent semesters.
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CAS to show third independent film
Continuing the Celebrity Artist Series’ “Mostly Mondays at the Movies,” the third film in the yearlong independent series, “Love Thy Nature,” will be screened Monday, Nov. 7, at 7 p.m. in Carver Hall, Kenneth S. Gross Auditorium.
“Love Thy Nature” tackles the relationship between humans and nature through a cinematic journey of the natural world. Narrated by actor Liam Neeson, the film immerses viewers through cinematic artistry on how our renewed connection with the environment is key to our wellbeing and to solving environmental crises. The film explores how nature nourishes humanity and how a new era of connectedness could bring about a biological revolution.
After the film, there will be a discussion with the director, Sylvie Rokab.Tickets are $3.50 in advance and $4 at the door. Tickets are available at the Haas Center box office, 570-389-4409, or www.cas.buzz.