Northern Illinois University

Northern Today

In Brief

August 25, 2008

FIT Club begins for fall

FIT classes being Tuesday, Aug. 26.

Those interested in joining FIT, or continuing their membership, should report at noon Tuesday, Aug. 26, to the FIT office (Room 127 of Anderson Hall) for medical screenings. Screenings must be completed before participating in any activities. If Tuesday is not convenient, call (815) 753-0335 to schedule an appointment.

Community School of the Arts
ready for fall classes, ensembles

Classes, lessons and ensembles in music and art begin in September at the NIU Community School of the Arts.

Programming is designed for children, teens and adults. Private lessons are available on all instruments, as well as in art and theater. Teachers are NIU students and faculty as well as community teachers.

The public is invited to the annual open house from 3 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 27, to learn more about the many arts opportunities available in the NIU Community School of the Arts. The event is held in the lobby of the concert hall in the NIU Music Building.

Free parking for the open house is available in the lot immediately adjacent to the Music Building on the south side.

Information and registration – 3 to 5 p.m.

Staff and teachers are available to answer questions about music lessons, classes and ensembles scheduled for fall and spring and to take registrations.

Free sample lessons – 3 to 5 p.m.

Free 15-minute sample music lessons are available. To reserve a slot, call the office today at (815) 753-1450. There is a limit of one free sample lesson per person. 

Free sample classes – 3:05 - 4:05 p.m.

3:05 to 3:20 – Around the World Class for ages 3 to 8
3:30 to 3:45 – Prelude Class for ages 1 to 3 and Piano Players Class for ages 6 to 8
3:50 to 4:05 – Development Class for ages 3 to 5

More information about these classes is available at or by calling (815) 753-1450. Please call by August 25 to reserve space; there is no limit to the number of sampler classes, but a parent must accompany each child. 

Talk – 4:10 p.m.

“Is Suzuki Right For You?” by Ann Montzka-Smelser. Learn more about this approach for teaching a young child to play violin, piano or guitar. Montzka-Smelser is the director of the Suzuki violin program at NIU. The talk takes place in the Recital Hall of the NIU Music Building.

Scholarship aid is available for students 18 and younger in financial need. Application forms are available by calling the office or in the display area outside Room 132 of the Music Building. The deadline for applications for fall scholarships is Friday, Aug. 29.

The NIU Community School of the Arts is sponsored by the College of Visual and Performing Arts at Northern Illinois University. More than 600 community people from nearly 50 towns and cities travel to DeKalb for lessons and classes.

Application forms are available by calling the office at (815) 753-1450 or online at The NIU Community School of the Arts is located in Room 132 of the Music Building.

Open labs offered to teach
about MyNIU Faculty Center

As the new semester gets under way, the NIUConnect/MyNIU team reminds faculty and instructors that the new student information system is up and running for Fall 2008. All faculty and instructors assigned to a Fall 2008 course now have access to view their class rosters via the faculty self-service page in MyNIU

Learn more about the Self-Service Faculty Center by attending one of the MyNIU Faculty Center open labs being held in Room 100 of Altgeld Hall from 8 a.m. to noon Wednesday, Sept. 3, and from 1 to 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 4. Faculty are invited to come and go in an informal lab setting; stay for a few minutes or longer to become familiar with the MyNIU Faculty Center pages.

A user guide for faculty self-service can be found at, or call the ITS Helpdesk at (815) 753-8100 for additional assistance.

Kishwaukee Concert Band
to begin fall rehearsals

The Greater Kishwaukee Area Concert Band will begin rehearsals Wednesday, Sept. 10, for its seventh season.

Rehearsals are held every Wednesday from 7:30 to 9 p.m. in the Huntley Middle School Band Room, located at the corner of South Seventh and Taylor streets in DeKalb. John Hansen is the conductor for the all-volunteer band.

The band is open to anyone 18 or older who has played a wind or percussion instrument in the past and enjoys keeping up their skills. No auditions are necessary.

Four concerts will be presented this year: Sunday, Oct. 19; Sunday, Nov. 30; Sunday, March 15; and Saturday, May 2.

For more information, call Sue at (815) 899-4867 or John at (815) 825-2350.

Nominations sought
for Lincoln Laureate

An outstanding undergraduate senior from each of the four-year degree-granting institutions of higher learning in Illinois is chosen annually to receive the Lincoln Academy Student Laureate Award. The University Scholarships Committee is requesting assistance in identifying the student graduating during 2008-2009 (August 2008, December 2008 or May 2009), who will be NIU’s recipient of this year’s award.

Lincoln Student Laureates are honored for their overall excellence in both curricular and co-curricular activities. The NIU Student Laureate should have a grade point average of 3.5 or higher and should have demonstrated leadership in extracurricular activities.

The person selected will represent the university at one of the most distinguished gatherings in the state, a special ceremony held in late October or early November in the House of Representatives of the Illinois State Capitol. Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich (or his designee), president of the academy, will present each Student Laureate with a Lincoln Academy Medallion and a check for $150. The ceremony will be followed by a luncheon. Nominator(s) of the recipient also will be asked to represent the university at this event.

Please be selective in your nomination: The person selected from NIU to receive this award should be the university’s most outstanding undergraduate senior student.

The nomination form and any supplementary pages should be returned to the Office of Scholarship Coordination/Scholarship Services, 245K Swen Parson Hall, by noon Friday, Sept. 12, for the nomination to be considered by the selection committee. 

Community School offers
Art Express on Saturdays

The NIU Community School of the Arts’ popular Art Express is free to children of staff, faculty and students. This class begins Saturday, Sept. 13, and runs for five weeks. The class is scheduled for 1 to 3 p.m.

This innovative and hands-on program encourages creative thinking in children ages 4 to 12. Teachers are students in an advanced art education class working under School of Art faculty supervision.

More information and a registration form are available online at or by calling (815) 753-1450. Students and employees of NIU should indicate their status at the top of the form. Although the tuition fee of $30 is waived for children of NIU staff, faculty and students, a $15 program registration fee and the form should be sent to the NIU Community School of the Arts in Room 132 of the Music Building.

Alumni Association launches
new membership program

The NIU Alumni Association has launched a new membership program. Open to alumni and friends, the program is an excellent way to show support for, and pride in, NIU. Members enjoy many benefits on campus and in the community.

Membership opportunities are available at two levels: Cardinal & Black and Legacy. Visit for more information.

Campus women’s groups host
‘Girls, Grills and Games’ event

The Women’s Resource Center, Women’s Studies and other campus women’s organizations will sponsor “Girls, Grills and Games” from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 26.

All campus women (and men as well) are invited to the lawn near the Women’s Resource Center, 105 Normal Road, for good food off the grill and fun games. Call (815) 753-0320 for more information.

Knitters invited to gather

Campus knitters – from rookies to crochet experts and everyone in between – are invited to the Fireside Lounge of Neptune Central from 9 to 10 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 28, for creativity, conversation and snacks.

Upcoming dates are Sept. 25, Oct. 30 and Nov. 20. Co-sponsors are the Women’s Resource Center and Alpha Phi Omega. Call (815) 753-0320 for more information.

Alumni Association plans travel
to Hawaii, Northern Ireland

NIU’s Alumni Association has several exciting travel destinations coming up.

Celebrate the winter holiday season with a Hawaiian Escape. Warm trade winds and a traditional Hawaiian “Aloha!” await guests on this three-island touring itinerary. The islands of Maui, Hawaii and Oahu offer a vast diversity of landscapes, natural beauty and attractions.

Travelers also are invited to discover the jewels of Northern Ireland next spring. Don’t miss out on the charm and the zest that encompasses the Emerald Isle. Northern Ireland brings back the joy of touring with breathtaking Irish landscapes, historical forts and palaces, famous coastlines and ancient accounts that mingle myth and legend.

Visit for more information about these travel destinations.

Community Dance School
opens registration for fall

Fall registration for the Community Dance School at NIU begins this week. Classes meet weekly from Monday, Sept. 8, through Saturday, Dec. 13.

The school is sponsored by the Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education and is directed by Diane Rimmer. The Community Dance School’s mission is to reach all members of the NIU community and surrounding areas, teach fundamentals of various dance forms and to allow each individual to expand upon their own abilities. Its main focus is to explore the joy of movement through dance, instilling a strong appreciation and understanding for it.

Classes begin at age 4 and continue through teen and adult. Classes offered include creative movement, ballet, tap, Irish step dancing, jazz/hip-hop, modern as well as ballroom, Latin and swing. Students are taught by NIU faculty and instructors who hold degrees in dance education, have danced professionally or who are currently dance performance majors at NIU.

NIU faculty member Barbara Heimerdinger will teach the ballroom, Latin and swing classes.

Registration will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 30, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 6, in Anderson Hall Studio, Room 130. For more information, call (815) 753-0277 or (815) 756-4092.

New tech development program
funds NIU’s commercial inventions

NIU innovators have less than a month to submit proposals to the Technology Transfer Office for the further development of inventions for entry into the commercial marketplace.

Friday, Sept. 5, is the deadline to apply for up to $20,000 to support development of novel applied technologies which have the near-term potential for licensing and commercialization.

The Technology Development Fund is a new program offered by the Division of Research and Graduate Studies to

  • promote further development of technologies with potential commercial appeal and for which the university has applied for intellectual property protection, or
  • expand research on promising new technologies near invention disclosure stage that boast short-term commercial potential but whose applications are not yet fully developed.

Exact funding guidelines and applications are available online at

The fund, which does not support basic research, has a limit of $50,000 for Fiscal Year 2009. Money awarded is available for up to one year and is not renewable. The proposed work must have a reasonable chance of being accomplished in one year.

Awards can be used only for technical support, supplies and contracted services directed to the funded projects. The money is not meant to supplement investigator’s salaries.

Members of the university’s Intellectual Property Committee will review the submitted proposals for commercial feasibility with the assistance of technical evaluators and will make recommendations for award to the interim vice president for research.

For more information, contact Rita Yusko, acting manager of the Technology Transfer Office, at (815) 753-9281 or