Northern Illinois University

Northern Today

Northern Today - September 8, 2008

Scholar returns from Malaysia to take
reins of Center for Southeast Asian Studies

James Collins spent the last 14 years of his life immersed in another culture, living and working in Malaysia.

Now a month removed, he seems to be settling right in at NIU.

“Everyone says I’m supposed to be experiencing culture shock,” Collins says. “But I feel just fine.”

In fact, in a real sense, this is a homecoming for the new director of NIU’s Center for Southeast Asian Studies. After all, Collins was born on Chicago’s South Side, spent his formative years in suburban South Holland and received his Ph.D. in linguistics from the University of Chicago in 1980.

Collins later served as director of the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Hawaii. Since 1995, he has worked as a research fellow at the Institute of the Malay World and Civilization on the campus of the National University of Malaysia, just 16 miles from the capital city of Kuala Lumpur.

“I’ve known about NIU’s reputation in Southeast Asia for some time,” Collins says. “In fact, one of the first books I read in graduate school was published by the NIU center, and throughout my career I’ve kept in touch with NIU faculty. The center has grown quite a bit and has been very successful in increasing its national profile. I hope to build upon that success and grow and learn here as well.

“And it’s nice,” he adds, “to be back in Illinois.”

NIU conducted an international search to replace Professor Dwight King, who stepped down as the center’s director in June but continues with his regular duties in the Department of Political Science.

The Center for Southeast Asian Studies coordinates an undergraduate minor and a graduate concentration in studies of the diverse sub-region of Asia, consisting of countries north of Australia, south of China and east of India.

At any given time, about 60 NIU undergraduates are working toward a minor in Southeast Asian studies, while another 50 graduate students are specializing in the area of study. In all, more than 2,000 students each year take courses offered in the region’s languages, literatures, anthropology, geography, history, religion, music, art history and government.

One of only nine federally designated national resource centers for Southeast Asian studies, NIU’s center is a hub of scholarship, boasting nearly 30 faculty associates and affiliates. They are all active researchers who teach substantial Southeast Asian content in their courses.

Additionally, the center is known internationally for developing SEAsite (www.seasite.niu.edu), an interactive Web site that offers language and culture training programs in Burmese, Indonesian, Khmer, Lao, Tagalog, Thai and Vietnamese.

“The Center for Southeast Asian Studies has a long-standing role as one of the leading assets of the College, and I am pleased to welcome a distinguished scholar and administrator as its new director,” says Chris McCord, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

“In addition to his accomplishments as a linguist, Dr. Collins brings considerable experience as a center director, conference organizer and author of successful grant proposals,” McCord says. “He brings a wealth of first-hand experience in the region and is also an Illinois native who we’re happy to welcome home.”

Collins describes himself as “a bookish guy who’s really into fieldwork.”

He has conducted research in such places as Borneo, East Indonesia and the Malay Peninsula. While working in Malaysia, he produced nearly one book a year, including a recently published dictionary of a local East Indonesian language known as Asilulu. He speaks Malay, Indonesian and several local East Indonesian languages fluently and can read in Dutch and German.

As a former assistant director and then director of the Southeast Asian studies center at the University of Hawaii, Collins has grant-writing experience and knows the ins and outs of running a national resource center at a public university. But his time spent abroad is perhaps his most valuable asset.

“Most specialists don’t have time to spend long periods of time in Southeast Asia. I’ve just spent 14 years there,” he says. “That’s given me a lot of contacts on the ground and also perhaps a different perspective of Southeast Asia. I hope that perspective will help me, in collaboration with my colleagues here, to find ways to bring Southeast Asia scholars and students to NIU and to bring NIU to Southeast Asia.”

Collins says NIU’s center must link locally, nationally and globally. Within the campus community, he will seek to establish new ties with other NIU centers and disciplines that haven’t traditionally been involved in Southeast Asian studies.

“I hope to see the center associates reach out to other units of the university,” he says. “We would like to draw faculty from other areas – perhaps, for example, from the Center for Latino and Latin American Studies – into studying Southeast Asia through the lens of their disciplines.”

Collins also intends to reach out to other universities across Illinois and nationwide. He’s planning a joint seminar for next spring with the University of Chicago on Southeast Asia and Southeast Europe, the latter being a specialty of his alma matter.

“NIU has the only nationally funded center for Southeast Asian studies in the state,” Collins says. “We are Chicago’s center for Southeast Asian studies. We should be offering our services to major research universities across the state and in the Midwest, helping them to expand whatever work they are doing in Southeast Asia.”

Other goals for the coming year include attracting more students to the study of Southeast Asia and increasing the level of grant funding for the center.

“We’ll be focusing on renewal of the U.S. Department of Education’s Title VI National Resource Center grant, which is a major piece of our funding,” Collins says. “We’ll also explore other American and overseas funding agencies. No grant is too small.”

Collins is not teaching any classes this semester at NIU, but he continues to work with Malaysian graduate students who are working toward advanced degrees. While in Malaysia, he supervised about 20 master’s theses and Ph.D.s. During the spring semester, he will teach a course at NIU on endangered languages.

Award-winning online campus map improves

A virtual trip through the NIU campus has never been easier.

NIU’s award-winning interactive Campus Web Map (www.webmap.niu.edu) has been upgraded this fall with a host of new features. Those features allow users to do everything from locating Huskie Bucks food establishments in DeKalb and Sycamore to finding copiers, printers and vending machines on campus.

Students can even find their seats on the east side of Huskie Stadium, and upgrades planned for later this fall will provide field views from the seating sections.

The map is now compatible with both Windows and Mac formats, as well as with multiple browsers, including Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox and Google Chrome. Additionally, the site has improved its features for visitors with disabilities.

The GPS-powered Campus Web Map attracts about 200 unique visitors daily. It was originally launched in 2004 and later was cited with a “best practices award” in an international competition sponsored by Intergraph Mapping and Geospatial Solutions, which provides software for the NIU mapping system.

“We think the map is unique in its level of detail, accuracy, quality and helpfulness,” said NIU research scientist Phil Young. He and research associate Rick Schwantes in the Department of Geography’s Advanced Geospatial Laboratory produce the map with assistance from students.

“We’re constantly working to improve it, and we’re anxious to hear feedback and suggestions,” Young said. Comments can be sent via e-mail at pyoung@niu.edu.

As in the past, the map enables users to quickly identify buildings, bus stops, bus routes, bicycle racks, construction zones, parking lots by permit type, handicapped-accessible parking areas and even points of interest. Click on a building and its picture pops up.

A map user also can highlight, zoom to and print out a custom map of a specific area on campus. It’s also easy to pan across campus, find latitude-longitude coordinates for a given point, or measure distances between two locations and estimate walking time. A query option enables searches for specific offices, departments, buildings, colleges or laboratories equipped with information technology services.

Some of the new features also include:

  • A tie-in to the popular Huskie Tracks GPS bus locator system.
  • Full screen-size maps that automatically adjust to the dimension of the user’s computer screen.
  • Enhanced color graphics.
  • Enhanced zoom settings.
  • Updated aerial images with expanded coverage in the DeKalb and Sycamore areas.
  • Expanded mapping coverage to include regional outreach centers and other off-campus facilities.

Two new mapping projects also are in the works.

Young said the mapping team is working with Greg Long, professor in the School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders, on a new map feature that will identify, rate and provide photos of all handicapped-accessible entrances and exits on campus.

The team also is working with Gaylen Kapperman, the longtime head of the NIU College of Education’s Programs in Vision, on a portable GPS-powered system equipped with audio components that will help people with visual impairments navigate the NIU campus.

College of Engineering reaps major gifts

The NIU College of Engineering and Engineering Technology is the recent recipient of a number of generous gifts, including sponsored labs and named professorships, from corporate partners.

“These gifts are another sign of the college coming in to its own, maturing,” Dean Promod Vohra said. “Each of these companies is a leader in its field, and our relationships with them not only benefit our students, but also reflect well on the growing reputation of the college.”

The benefactors include:

  • Automation Direct. Based in Cummings, Ga., Automation Direct is one of the leading manufacturers of the sensors, controls, motors and other equipment that are at the heart of industrial automation. The company has a long history of supporting programs in CEET’s Department of Technology and recently agreed to formalize that relationship with a $100,000 gift that creates the Automation Direct Laboratory and funds the Automation Direct Professorship, a post that will be filled by Professor of Technology Andrew Otieno. The gift will help ensure that NIU students continue to benefit from exposure to the latest automation equipment and encourage the creation of outreach programs that will allow representatives from industry to update their skills in the lab.
  • Mitutoyo America Corporation. An Aurora-based company, Mitutoyo is a world-leader in the making of measuring devices used throughout the industrial sector. This most recent gift from the company, which has a long history of generous support to CEET, creates the Mitutoyo Metrology Laboratory where students will get hands-on experience using some of the company’s most advanced equipment. The $125,000 gift will be made over three years.
  • Harley-Davidson. One of the world’s most famous names in motorcycles, Harley-Davidson, has made a $25,000 gift to CEET to create the position of Harley-Davidson Professor of Research and Development. The first to hold that title will be Jenn-Terng Gau, a professor of mechanical engineering who previously worked for the company. In this role, Gau and select students will have an opportunity to work on real-world manufacturing issues. Their first task is to assist in a program aimed at reducing waste metal resulting from the manufacture of gas tanks.
  • Caterpillar Corp. The Peoria-based maker of farm and construction equipment, which has been a strong supporter of NIU for years, recently made a gift of $35,000 to support various programs at CEET and in the NIU College of Business. The gift includes $14,000 to support efforts by CEET to attract more minorities and women to the field of engineering. Another $16,000 will fund Caterpillar Excellence Scholarships at both CEET and the College of Business. The remaining $5,000 will be used to support the BELIEF Initiative, an ethics program in the College of Business which is becoming a national model.

“All of these gifts are a testament to the growing reputation that the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology enjoys throughout our region and beyond,” said Jon Salvani, who recently was named the senior gift and estate planning officer for the college. “As we formalize our giving program in the college, I am confident that we will see more such opportunities for partnership arise.”

Salvani added that he expects to announce several other major gifts in the near future.

“The field of engineering is a catalyst for innovation and economic development,” Vohra said. “Partnerships with these companies will result in our students being functional and make participating companies more competitive.”

Law school welcomes French students
from University Montesquieu-Bordeaux

NIU’s College of Law is once again hosting a delegation of French law students and professors for a three-week program titled “Introduction to the American Legal System.”

Nineteen law students and two professors arrived Aug. 28 from the University Montesquieu-Bordeaux IV in Agen, France. Through classes and visits to various legal institutions, the purpose of the program is to provide the French students with a basic understanding of the American legal system and the ways in which it is different from their own.

This is the second year that NIU College of Law professors David Gaebler and Daniel Reynolds coordinated the program in cooperation with the NIU Division of International Programs.

“We hosted the French law students last year for the first time, and the program was a resounding success,” Gaebler said. “The French students and faculty were especially pleased and impressed by the time and attention they received from state and federal judges whose courts we visited and by the opportunity to meet and get to know our own NIU law students.”

Members of the French delegation will attend lectures taught by NIU College of Law faculty that focus on the structure of American court systems, the relationship between federal and state legal systems and the institutional structure and procedural dimensions of the American criminal justice system. The group also will take a number of field trips, including visits to the Illinois State Capitol, Illinois Supreme Court and the United States Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

“This year’s schedule allows more interaction between the French and NIU College of Law students, thereby increasing the opportunity for dialogue,” Gaebler said. “It is our hope that as the students learn more about each other’s legal systems, they will gain insight and perspective regarding their own as well.”

This exchange program comes about from a 13-year relationship between NIU College of Law and the University Montesquieu-Bordeaux IV.

Since 1996, more than 200 NIU law students have participated in a summer study abroad program to Agen, France, in cooperation with the University of Bordeaux. The six-week program introduces NIU law students to France’s civil law system as well as to the European union legal system.

“Our French hosts at the University of Bordeaux have always been very gracious and generous to our NIU students,” Reynolds said, “and this gives us a chance to reciprocate.”

Mobile Secretary of State’s Office to return
to campus to provide numerous services

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White will send his office’s mobile services to NIU seven times this academic year.

Members of the NIU community, including students, faculty, staff and local residents can renew, replace or correct driver’s licenses or state IDs, purchase annual vehicle license plate stickers, register for organ and tissue donation and conduct other transactions.

Services are available from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, Sept. 15, in the lower level of the Holmes Student Center. Other dates are Oct. 20, Nov. 17, Jan. 19, Feb. 16, March 16 and April 20. Acceptable forms of payment include personal checks, cash, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit and debit cards.

“This is the fourth year of this partnership between the Secretary of State’s Office and Northern Illinois University,” White said. “This is a great example of how my office can work with public and private universities to make these transactions more convenient.”

Motorists wishing to renew their driver’s licenses can do so up to one year in advance of their licenses’ expiration dates. Proper identification is required for new and duplicate driver’s licenses and state ID cards. A complete list of acceptable forms of identification is available at www.cyberdriveillinois.com.

Customers also can purchase license plates for passenger vehicles, motorcycles and B-Trucks and obtain vehicle title and registration and parking placards for people with disabilities.

Peter Sagal appearance moved to Oct. 28
to benefit Friends of NIU Libraries group

Peter Sagal fans will have to “wait, wait” another month to see the National Public Radio personality on the NIU campus.

Sagal – host of NPR’s popular program, “Wait Wait . . . Don’t Tell Me!” – was scheduled to appear during a 25th anniversary celebration for Friends of Northern Illinois University Libraries.

Because of a scheduling conflict, however, the event has been moved to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 28, at the Barsema Alumni and Visitors Center, 231 N. Annie Glidden Road. A reception with a cash bar and hors d’oeuvres will be held prior to Sagal’s 7:45 p.m. talk, which will be followed by a book signing.

Tickets to the event cost $25 and can be purchased by calling Angie Schroeder at (815) 753-8091. Tickets already purchased will be honored at the rescheduled event, or ticketholders can seek refunds through Schroeder.

Sagal has been the host of “Wait Wait... Don’t Tell Me!” since May 1998. The program attracts 2.5 million listeners each week, as Sagal, NPR veteran newscaster Carl Kasell and well-known guest panelists discuss and review current events of the week in the form of a quiz. Sagal also travels the country with his quiz show playing at sold-out theaters.

Additionally, Sagal is author of “The Book of Vice (Naughty Things and How to Do Them),” a series of comic essays about people who misbehave and why. Copies of the book will be available for purchase during Sagal’s NIU appearance courtesy of Arcadia Discount Books, 203 E. Locust St., which also will have displays of the book at its store in anticipation of the event.

A native of Berkeley Heights, N.J., Sagal attended Harvard University and has worked as an actor, literary manager, stage director, travel writer, essayist and ghostwriter. He also has penned numerous plays that have been performed in large and small venues across the country and abroad. He now lives in Chicago with his family.

The Friends of NIU Libraries was founded in 1983 as an association of library supporters interested in developing and supporting the resources of University Libraries. Through membership, gifts and bequests, the group provides funds for the purchase of materials that the library is unable to acquire. Throughout the year, the Friends also hosts speakers, programs and book appraisal fairs open to the public.

For more information on the event, call (815) 753-8091 or e-mail aschroeder@niu.edu.

President John Peters to deliver State of the University Address

NIU President John G. Peters will deliver his annual State of the University Address at 3 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 25, in the Altgeld Hall auditorium.

A reception will follow in the Altgeld Hall foyer immediately after the address.

Call (815) 753-1999 for more information.

Memorial gathering scheduled tonight for Christopher Markle

A memorial gathering will be held in the O’Connell Theatre at 8 p.m. this evening in honor of NIU School of Theatre and Dance professor Christopher Markle.

Markle died July 28. He was 53.

Markle started at NIU in 1998 as a teacher and as the artistic director of the school’s professional company, SummerNite. In 2004, he was promoted to “head of performance.” He was a beloved member of the NIU family.

“There will be people from Professor Markle’s past who will speak about his work,” said Alexander Gelman, director of the NIU School of Theater and Dance. “The evening is planned as a celebration of Christopher Markle’s life.”

The memorial service is open to the public. For more information, call (815) 753-8269.

Assessment Services posts fall issue of ‘Toolkit’ newsletter

NIUs Office of Assessment Services presents the Fall 2008 issue of “Toolkit,” its quarterly nuts and bolts e-newsletter. “Toolkit” is specifically designed to assist the NIU community with practical assessment issues in a user-friendly format.

This issue features answers to frequently asked questions about NIU’s annual assessment update reports; a look at upcoming assessment events, including workshops to be presented Friday, Sept. 12, by Linda Suskie at NIU; and conferences at which NIU faculty and staff will present. Also featured are an online resource for rubrics; a matrix of assessment methods in use at NIU; and an introduction to Sonja Herington, who is in charge of college-level assessment and accreditation activities in the College of Business.

Back issues are posted on the Assessment Services Web site under “Toolkit.” Contributions to the newsletter are welcome at any time.

Women’s Resource Center sponsors Selfless Saturdays

The Women’s Resource Center will sponsor this volunteer activity from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 13, in partnership with various DeKalb community organizations. Bagels and coffee, transportation and supplies will be provided. Meet at the Women’s Resource Center, 105 Normal Road, DeKalb.

For more information or to RSVP, contact Patrice Rounsaville at (815) 753-0320.

Upcoming dates:

  • Sunday, Oct. 12 – RAMP (to be held on Sunday as a kick-off for Homecoming week)
  • Saturday, Nov. 8 – Opportunity House
  • Saturday, Dec. 6 – Barb City Manor

Ally Program opens registration
for fall Ally training workshops

The Ally Program is a campus-wide program designed to foster a welcoming and supportive campus environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students, faculty and staff by creating a visible network of allies.

NIU employees and students interested in volunteering for the Ally Program can learn more and register online. The online form provides the specific workshop dates and times and allows registrants to indicate first, second and third choices.

Training is divided into two two-hour workshops (Part I and Part II). Volunteers must attend both Part I and Part II. Space is limited, and advance registration is required. Multiple dates are available.

Part I
Monday, Sept. 15: 9 to 11 a.m.
Monday, Sept. 22: 2 to 4 p.m.
Tuesday, Sept. 30: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.

Part II
Thursday, Oct. 9: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Monday, Oct. 20: 9 to 11 a.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 22: 2 to 4 p.m.

The Ally Program is sponsored by the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Resource Center, Division of Student Affairs.

Conference on ‘first year’ scheduled for Oct. 24 at HSC

NIU faculty and staff are invited to attend a one-day regional drive-in conference on “Strengthening the First Year of College: Purposeful Strategies for Pedagogy and Practice.”

The conference will be held Friday, Oct. 24, at the Holmes Student Center. The conference is co-hosted by Oakton Community College and Rock Valley College.

The early bird conference fee is $69. After Monday, Sept. 15, the registration fee is $79. A continental breakfast and luncheon are included. Registration and other conference information are available online or through Orientation & First-Year Experience at (815) 753-1535.

The keynote address, titled “Promoting First-Year Success through Collaborative Partnerships,” will be given by Charles C. Schroeder of Noel-Levitz, Inc. As a senior associate consultant for Noel-Levitz, Schroeder offers more than two decades of experience as an administrator, writer, and consultant on student affairs and the student experience. He is a past president of ACPA (College Student Educators International) and has published more than 70 articles and chapters in various refereed journals and books.

The plenary speaker, Trudy Bers, is executive director of research, curriculum and planning at Oakton Community College in the northern suburbs of Chicago. Bers’ research interests include the community college, the assessment of student learning outcomes and college choice for community college students and their parents.

This regional drive-in conference provides a forum for faculty, academic administrators and student affairs professionals to share ideas, resources and engaging pedagogy to enhance the learning of first-year students on two- and four-year campuses.

Concurrent breakout session topics include:

  • The Impact of Peer Advisors on Student Success
  • Getting First-Year Students to Get with the (Financial) Program
  • Building a Collaborative Orientation Model
  • Strengthening the College Experience for Commuter and Non-Traditional Students: A Glance at Current Trends and Successful Practices
  • Principles and Practices in Delivering Academic Advising for First-Year Students
  • Initiating a Common Reading Experience: Best Practices from the Field and Benefits for First-Year Students

Nominations sought for Presidential Research Professors

Nominations are being sought for NIU’s 2009 Presidential Research Professorships, which recognize outstanding accomplishment and future potential in academic research or creative artistry.

Faculty members may be nominated, or may initiate their own candidacy, by submitting letters of nominations or self-nominations to James Erman, interim vice president for research, by Monday, Oct. 20.

The nomination and self-nomination letters must include the candidate’s qualifications in accordance with the award specifications. Four complete sets of application materials must then be submitted to Erman’s office by Monday, Nov. 10.

Up to three new Presidential Research Professors are designated each year. Upon appointment, each award recipient will receive a base-salary increment of $2,000.

Additionally, a grant of $5,000 will be provided during each year of the appointment, provided the recipient remains a full-time NIU faculty member. The grant money is to be used for scholarly activities. Award recipients also receive one semester of release from teaching and other non-research responsibilities. 

More detailed information on the award and on the call for nominations can be found at www.niu.edu/provost/awards/prp.shtml.

DeKalb Festival Chorus invites new singers

The DeKalb Festival Chorus invites vocalists to join for this season’s exciting performance of Daniel Pinkham’s  “Christmas Cantata, Sinfonia Sacra” (Dec. 7), as well as the Holiday Concert (Dec. 14) and Haydn’s “Theresienmesse” in the spring.

The holiday program takes shape around the beloved story by Dylan Thomas, “A Child’s Christmas in Wales.” Robert Dean Ludden has been secured as the dramatic reader.

Rehearsals are held from 7 to 9 p.m. Mondays in Room 171 of the NIU Music Building. Auditions are required; e-mail the director at festivalchorus@gmail.com to arrange a brief audition.

Rehearsals begin Monday, Sept. 8. Come before 7 p.m. to register. Adult membership costs $30. Full-time student membership is $15.

For more information, visit www.dekalbfestivalchorus.org or call (630) 453-8006.

DAWC presents exhibition of trailblazing NIU alumnae

A trio of NIU alumnae shares its passion for creative expression in a collaborative art exhibition, “Patterns of the Mind,” on display at the DeKalb Area Women’s Center during September.

While Linda Tillis (M.A. ’73, Ph.D. ’88), Diane Johns (M.S. Ed. ’06) and Jana Mirs (B.G.S. ’94, M.F.A. ’00) have known each other for years, this is the first time they have teamed up for a show. The exhibition features more than 60 wall-hung pieces, each one a tribute to the design process. Most are intimate pieces, spotlighting a detail on which the artist focused at that particular moment in time.

Tillis, an NIU retiree following 23 years of service as associate director of Student Housing and Dining, uses quilt-like patterns as a framework to embrace her expressions with color, design and objects of day-to-day experiences or fancies. She constructs her own patterns and has recently become particularly drawn to a “fractured” quilt pattern, which is featured in many of the pieces on display.

Johns, who currently serves as a thesis and dissertation adviser in NIU’s Graduate School, is using the show’s theme to delve into the world of the subconscious. In her latest series of quilts, she depicts several of the marvelous and magical elements which thread their way through her dreams. She uses color, printed pattern, the quilting stitch and other surface design to explore powerful images such as the tornado.

Mirs’ personal research into the concept of “home” – coupled with her intuitive use of design, color, scale and relationships – has resulted in a series of art quilts depicting fantastical houses and their environments. These are constructed from a variety of whimsical prints and sometimes populated by surprising creatures.

All three artists share a zeal for intense examination and artistic expression. Each juxtaposes geometric shapes and design imagery to make the familiar appear unfamiliar – and vice versa. All together, their patterns of the mind are worth navigating.

The public is invited to view the exhibit from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursdays, from 7 to 9 p.m. Fridays, from 5 to 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 21, or by appointment. An artists’ reception will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 14, and will include musical entertainment provided by violinist Ann Montzka and cellist Linc Smelser at 5 p.m. followed by a performance of the Bread & Roses Women’s Chorus at 6 p.m.

The DAWC is located at 1021 State Street in DeKalb. Parking is available in the paved lot off of Eleventh Street, one-half block south of the building. The handicapped-accessible lift can be reached from the alley north of the building. For further information, or to arrange a group showing, call Anna Marie Coveny, gallery director, at (815) 758-1351 or (815) 761-1735.

Peace Corps recruiter to visit

Hazel Domangue, recruiter for the Peace Corps, will come to campus Thursday, Sept. 18, and Friday, Sept. 19.

Domangue will attend the Study Abroad Fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 18, in the Duke Ellington Ballroom of the Holmes Student Center.

From 5 to 7 p.m. that evening, she will host a general information meeting in Room 306 of the student center. This important session is one of the first steps in learning more about the process of joining the Peace Corps. Handouts are available; questions are encouraged.

On-campus interviews take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, Sept. 19, in the Career Center (Room 260) of the Campus Life Building. Applications must be submitted and appointment must be scheduled by Friday, Sept. 12.

Contact Domangue at (312) 353-5224 or hdomangue@peacecorps.gov for more information.

Sept. 17 opening reception set
for exhibition by artist Montoya

Malaquias Montoya, one of the nation’s top Chicano artists, will visit DeKalb for the opening reception of an exhibition of his artworks.

The reception for Montoya will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 17, at the Nehring Gallery, 111 S. Second St., DeKalb. The exhibit will run through Oct. 15.

Montoya’s works, titled “Globalization & War: The Aftermath,” depict the consequences of power and conflict. The artist’s 23 paintings and prints facilitate the understanding of the destruction, displacement and loss of culture brought on by man-made conflict. Each piece illustrates the human spirit in its most vulnerable state: fighting between obliteration and survival.

Montoya is a leading figure in the West Coast political Chicano graphic arts movement, a political and socially conscious movement. His works are in the collections of the Smithsonian, the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum in Chicago, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and more than a dozen other museums, libraries and universities.

“Malaquias Montoya is among the most prominent living Chicano artists,” says Emily Prieto, director of the NIU Latino Resource Center, the organizing sponsor of the event.

“His work is extremely powerful because the edgy imagery evokes many emotions in his audience, and all of the pieces are tied to social protest messages,” Prieto says. “Looking at his art pieces compels a person to do something to positively impact humanity.”

Other sponsors of the exhibit include the NIU Student Association, College of Visual and Performing Arts, Center for Black Studies, Center for Latino and Latin American Studies, Campus Activities Board, International Programs and Unity in Diversity.

More information on Montoya is available online at www.malaquiasmontoya.com.

Huskie Golf Day to benefit NIU Women’s Golf team

The NIU Women’s Golf team will host its annual Huskie Golf Day Friday, Sept. 26, at Whisper Creek Golf Club in Huntley. Foursomes will be paired with NIU women golfers.

Check in takes place at noon with tee times from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. Cost is $125 per player. A cocktail hour, awards and raffle follow play.

Registration deadline is Sunday, Sept. 19. Contact Women’s Golf Assistant Coach Ashley Anast at (815) 753-6668 or aanast@niu.edu.

Provost invites nominations for Presidential Teaching Professors

All letters of nomination for the 2009 Presidential Teaching Professorships should be submitted to Vice Provost Earl “Gip” Seaver, Office of the Provost, Altgeld Hall 215, no later than Monday, Sept. 29.

Following receipt of a letter of nomination, the selection committee will invite each nominated faculty member to prepare materials in accordance with the published procedure. Only full professors with tenure and at least six years service at NIU are eligible for the award.

The Presidential Teaching Professorships were established in 1990 to recognize those outstanding teachers who have demonstrated over time that they:

  • instill and develop in students an intensity of inter­est in, and an apprecia­tion for, the value of the subject;
  • apply rigorous standards to student performance, in­spire students to become the best that they can be, and stimulate student growth;
  • command respect and esteem as a teacher rather than merely being popular;
  • demonstrate extraordinary commitment to students and their welfare, not only that the nominee is knowledge­able and prepared for class but is available to them outside of class for help with materials, for advising them, for listening to their concerns, and for assist­ing them with extra-class projects or activities;
  • explore and develop effective instructional methods and technologies;
  • work actively with students, faculty, and administra­tors to improve under­gradu­ate and/or graduate education at NIU, and other activities directed toward the im­provement of instruction.

The procedure calls for a rigorous and thorough portfolio review including contacting former students. The 2009 recipients will be announced next spring.

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 www.niu.edu/extprograms 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 myniu.com 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 myniu.com for more information about these travel destinations.