Northern Illinois University

Northern Today

In Brief

October 19, 2009

Mobile DMV on campus today

NIU students, faculty, staff and local residents can renew driver’s licenses and state IDs, purchase their annual vehicle license plate stickers, register to be organ and tissue donors or conduct other transactions at a mobile office coming to campus.

The mobile office will visit campus from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. today in the lower level of the Holmes Student Center. The next fall date is Monday, Nov. 16.

Acceptable forms of payment include personal checks, cash, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit and debit cards. Other services available include vehicle title registration and parking placards for persons with disabilities.

A complete list of acceptable forms of identification is online at

Art Education faculty welcome
speaker on ‘Child-Art-Culture’

NIU’s art education program will welcome visiting 2009 Fulbright Scholar and guest speaker, Andrea Kárpáti, at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20.

Kárpáti will give an open lecture titled, “Hungarian Gypsy: Child-Art-Culture.” All are welcome to attend this event in Room 110 of the Visual Arts Building.

Professor and head of the UNESCO Centre for Information and Communication Technologies at ELTE University, Faculty Sciences, in Budapest, Hungary, Kárpáti is a member of the editorial board of three international research journals. She also sits on the executive committee of EDEN (European Distance Education Network), the executive board of the UNESCO commission-Hungary, and the educational committee of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

Her current research focuses on the study of the traditional and digital visual expressions of youth subcultures, testing art and design skills, visual talent in multicultural communities and the use of multimedia applications in education.

E-mail for more information.

Yale historian to deliver
Lincoln Lecture tonight

Yale historian Jonathan Spence, among the world’s leading authorities on the shaping of modern China, will deliver the sixth annual W. Bruce Lincoln Lecture at 7:30 p.m. today in the Altgeld Hall Auditorium. The event is free and open to all.

British born and educated at Cambridge and Yale, Spence has written more than 15 books, including “The Search for Modern China,” which has become one of the standard texts on the last several hundred years of Chinese history. Every edition of the book has been a bestseller.

His NIU lecture is titled, “China and the West: A Seventeenth Century Chinese Pioneer.”

“In the 17th century, it was already becoming moderately common for some Western missionaries, traders and diplomats to visit China,” Spence said. “This lecture looks at the other side of this story, to the fragments of evidence that let us study one of the first Chinese visitors to travel to England and France, and to examine what he experienced when he was there.”

Spence holds the title of Sterling Professor of History Emeritus at Yale University and has long been regarded as one of the most popular undergraduate lecturers at the university. He has been the recipient of both the MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship and the Guggenheim Fellowship and has received 10 honorary degrees.

Grad school seeks nominations
for honorary doctoral degrees

NIU’s Graduate School has issued its annual call for nominations for honorary doctoral degrees to be awarded from NIU.

This year’s nominations, with the required supporting information, are due Friday, Dec. 18, to James Erman, interim vice president for research and graduate studies.

Awarding an honorary degree is an opportunity for NIU to recognize someone especially outstanding in a field of interest to the university. It is necessary, though not sufficient, for a nominee to be accomplished and renowned in his or her field; an honorary degree recipient should be clearly exceptional among other outstanding persons in that field.

While a connection to NIU or to the State of Illinois is not a requirement for nomination, any such relationship should be noted and will be considered during the selection process.

A nomination must be accompanied by:

  • A supporting narrative that clearly indicates the nominee’s distinction, as mentioned above, in business, education, the liberal arts and sciences, technology, the fine arts, other professional fields or public service.
  • One or more standard biographical statements from appropriate reference sources (these are not substitutes for the narrative indicated above).
  • Current mailing address of the nominee.

Any person affiliated with NIU may submit a nomination, indicating the nominator’s identity and connection with the university. The Honorary Degree Committee encourages nominations by groups as well as by individuals. Nominators should alert all university departments and divisions related to the area of the nominee’s accomplishments and invite those units to provide the committee with input regarding the merits of the nomination.

As the university does not intend to award more than two honorary degrees in a year, the selection process is stringent. Furthermore, as the committee recommendations subsequently pass through several other approval steps, the process is lengthy. 

Twenty-seven honorary degrees have been awarded since 1983.

What’s cooking at Ellington’s?

On the menu at Ellington’s this week: Calavance Restaurant is scheduled for Tuesday. Caribbean Cove takes over Wednesday. Wasabi Bistro concludes the week Thursday.

Continuing this semester is the option to enjoy wine with your meal. One red and one white wine choice will be available with meal service. Wine will be selected for the menu based on wine-and-food pairings made by the students. Wine selections will range from $4.50 to $6.50 per glass.

Calavance Restaurant features sundried tomato triangles or tabbouleh salad for starters, Mediterranean chicken kabobs or eggplant matzo lasagna for entrees and Turkish pudding or almond lemon torte for dessert. Each table will be served zatter sticks with garlic yogurt dip.

Caribbean Cove features jerk-spiced shrimp with fruit salsa or avocado salad for starters, calypso chicken or spicy Caribbean stew with pumpkin for entrees and chocolate coconut rum cake or mango-lime ice for dessert. Each table will be served plantain chips with warm cilantro dipping sauce.

Wasabi Bistro features sushi or miso soup for starters, udon noodles with beef or hoisen-drenched tofu and stir-fried vegetables for entrees and green tea cheesecake with raspberries or vanilla ice cream with oranges and sake cream for dessert. Each table will be served freshly steamed edamame.

Seating is from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. with service until 1 p.m. The cost is $9 per person. Ellington’s is located on the main floor of the Holmes Student Center. Call (815) 753-1763 or visit to make reservations.

Northern Pride lunches
held every Thursday

Northern Pride weekly lunches offer an informal opportunity for those in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and ally community at NIU to meet, socialize and network.

The lunches take place every Thursday from noon to 1 p.m. in the Blackhawk Cafeteria East meeting room and are open to students, faculty and staff. Those attending can purchase lunch at the Blackhawk Cafeteria or bring their own lunch. The meeting room is located directly across from the cash registers in the cafeteria.

For more information, contact the LGBT Resource Center at (815) 753-5428 or

Art Museum to host faculty show

NIU’s Art Museum will host the NIU School of Art Faculty Biennial from Tuesday, Oct. 27, through Saturday, Dec. 5. An opening reception for the exhibition is scheduled from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 29.

The exhibition features recent work by the faculty, visiting faculty and members of the Supportive Professional Staff in a variety of media, including ceramics, design, drawing, fiber, illustration, jewelry, metal work, painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, time arts, video and visual communication. Also featured are research in art education and art history.

Spanning all four galleries of the museum, this exhibition provides an opportunity for the NIU and greater DeKalb and Sycamore communities to discover or become reacquainted with the research, ideas and artwork of these faculty members. 

For details on lectures offered in conjunction with the exhibition, visit The museum will be closed from Nov. 25 through Nov. 30 for the Thanksgiving recess.

Located on the west-end first floor of Altgeld Hall, the galleries are open to the public from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and by appointment for group tours. Exhibitions and lectures are free; donations are appreciated.

The exhibitions of the NIU Art Museum are funded in part by the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, the Friends of the NIU Art Museum, and the Arts Fund 21. For more information, visit or call (815) 753-1936.

Retirement party scheduled
for HSC bookstore’s Foster

A retirement party for Pat Foster has been scheduled from 2 to 4 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 29, in the Clara Sperling Sky Room in the Holmes Student Center.

Foster began working in the University Bookstore in 1995 and has been responsible for the custom publishing service for faculty.

Retirement party scheduled
for financial aid’s Hogeveen

A retirement party for Marsha Hogeveen, office support specialist in Student Financial Aid, is planned for 2 to 4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30.

The party will be held in Room 245 of Swen Parson Hall. Enter through the Scholarship Department. Light snacks and beverages will be served.

Kishwaukee Symphony plans
Halloween concert Oct. 30

Musical tricks and tasty treats for children of all ages are served up at a pair of special Halloween concerts at 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30, in Boutell Memorial Concert Hall.

Conductor Linc Smelser and the KSO will perform season-appropriate pieces, including “Phantom of the Opera,” Meyer’s “Rosin Eating Zombies from Outer Space,” “In the Hall of the Mountain King” by Grieg and “A Night on Bald Mountain” by Mussogrsky. 

These concerts are especially programmed for family audiences. Performers and audience members all are encouraged to come in costume, and the concert hall is decorated in a Halloween spirit.

There will be trick-or-treating opportunities for children from 5 to 5:30 p.m. with students and faculty members distributing free candy. Prairie View Dental of Sycamore, the concert sponsor, will hand out free dental samples to all trick-or-treaters.

Both concerts are free and open to the public, and the building is accessible to all. For more information, contact Amanda Nelson at (815) 756-3728 or

LGBT travel funds available

NIU’s Presidential Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity has limited travel funds available to help support faculty, staff and students who wish to attend conferences, workshops or seminars for the purpose of learning about or presenting scholarship on lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender topics.

Individuals requesting funds will be asked to submit a PCSOGI Request for Travel Support form, including a breakdown of costs and other sources of funding support. All travel must take place in the current fiscal year (through June 30, 2010). The Request for Travel Support form is available online.

For more information, contact Patricia Liberty Baczek at (815) 753-5428 or via e-mail at

Three-mile walk, run Nov. 7
to benefit ‘Miles for Myles’

NIU Athletics will host a three-mile run/walk next month to raise money and awareness for cancer research in honor of the late NCAA President Myles Brand, who died Sept. 16 from pancreatic cancer.

Athletes, coaches, staff, students and community will come together with universities across the nation Saturday, Nov. 7, to participate in the “Miles for Myles” race for cancer.

All are invited to attend the 10 a.m. race at the NIU Soccer and Track & Field Complex. A $1 donation from each participant is sought. Registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. at the complex’s concession area.

Proceeds raised will be donated to three organizations fighting cancer: Coaches vs. Cancer (NABC), the Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund and The Myles Brand Endowed Chair for Cancer Research at the Indiana University School of Medicine.

The event is open to anyone who wishes to participate. Free parking will be available at the Convocation Center. For more information, call Janaan Mickey at (815) 753-7370.

Foundation urges giving
to faculty, staff campaign

For those who haven’t had an opportunity to participate in the NIU Foundation’s Faculty & Staff Campaign, now is the time. Participation is easy and every gift, no matter its size, will make an immediate impact at NIU.

Here are five simple ways to participate to make your gift count in the 2009-10 campaign:

Give online
Gifts made by Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express can be quickly and safely processed through our secure Web site.

Give offline
One-time credit card or check gifts may be made using the Outright Gift Form. Make checks payable to the NIU Foundation.

Give through payroll deduction
Download the Payroll Deduction Gift Form. Payroll deduction gifts have a minimum of $5 per pay period and can be ongoing or limited to a certain amount.

Give over the phone
Call 1-877-GIV-2-NIU (1-877-448-2648) and a friendly Faculty & Staff Campaign representative will process your credit card gift.

Give in person
Visit the Advancement Services office in Swen Parson Hall 220.

While this year’s campaign focuses on expendable scholarship support for students, your gift can be designated to any area at NIU. Also, no matter which method of giving you prefer, 100 percent of your gift will support your area of choice.

Club to celebrate elements
for National Chemistry Week

The NIU Chemistry Club invites the public to celebrate National Chemistry Week with an evening of chemistry demonstrations beginning at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 21, in Faraday Hall 143. This year’s theme is “Chemistry – It’s Elemental!” 

“Since the theme deals with the ‘elemental’ nature of chemistry, we have selected demos that involve reactions of elements,” says Professor David Ballantine, faculty adviser for the Chem Club.

“Some of the more dramatic elemental reactions involve the thermite reaction, the reaction of white phosphorus with air, potassium with water and combustion of magnesium with carbon dioxide.”

The evening will conclude with an always crowd-pleasing demo – the making of liquid nitrogen ice cream.

Some of the experiments planned for the evening might involve loud noises and produce some smoke and/or unpleasant smells and might be inappropriate for small children. To ensure the safety of the audience and the presenters, flash photography will not be permitted. For some experiments, members of the audience might be asked to move away from the demonstration area, again for safety precautions.

Parking will be available in the NIU Parking Deck along the west side of Normal Road. The Parking Deck is open for general parking after 7 p.m., except for reserved and handicapped spaces.

CISLL announces mini-grants

NIU’s Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Language and Literacy has announced a mini-grant program.

Mini-grants are designed to assist CISLL faculty in the development of research or service oriented grant proposals for external funding. Awards may be used to support travel to confer with funding agencies, attendance at workshops for seeking external funding, salary to support proposal development or salary for assistance (typing, etc.).

Faculty are required to apply in multidisciplinary groups with at least two departments represented. Awards only will be given to individuals affiliated with CISLL; however, individuals hired by the awardees need not be affiliate of the center.

Award amounts can vary depending on need, with a maximum amount per award of $1,000 per individual. The deadline for applications is Friday, Oct. 30.

Direct questions to or Anne Darfler at For more information, call (815) 753-5793. 

CISLL to host speaker series
on Response to Intervention

NIU’s Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Language & Literacy will host a November seminar series on Response to Intervention (RtI). These informative and engaging talks will begin at either 4 or 4:30 p.m.

  • Wednesday, Nov. 4: Mark Shinn, professor of school psychology and program director at National Louis University, is an expert on curriculum-based measurement and RtI.
  • Thursday, Nov. 12: Christine Malecki, associate professor of psychology, is director of the school psychology program at NIU.
  • Thursday, Nov. 19: NIU’s Janet Holt and Vicki Collins. Holt is professor and program coordinator of research and assessment in the Department of Educational Technology, Research and Assessment, where Collins is assistant professor of research and assessment.

For more information, call (815) 753-5793.

Stroke support group
announces fall activities

NIU’s Stroke Networking and Activity Program (SNAP), a stroke support group operated by speech-language pathology faculty in the School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders, has announced its fall schedule of activities.

Lilli Bishop, a clinical faculty member, and Jamie Mayer, assistant professor, invite stroke survivors and their loved ones to programs held from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 5, and Thursday, Dec. 3, in Room 1219 of the NIU Family Health, Wellness and Literacy Center, 3100 Sycamore Road.

The topic for Nov. 5 is “Enhancing Memory: Exercises or Strategies?” and the topic for Dec. 3 is “Learn about Tai Chi!”

SNAP’s programming teaches stroke survivors and their loved ones more about stroke recovery, rehabilitation and prevention while it introduces participants to other individuals in the community who have shared similar experiences.

For more information, or to arrange transportation, call (815) 753-9166 or e-mail

CGS sponsors art contest

NIU students are invited to participate in a juried art competition with a $1,000 prize for the first place piece, $500 for second place and $250 for third.

The competition is sponsored by NIU’s Center for Governmental Studies (CGS) in preparation of its 40th anniversary celebration. CGS is a public service, applied research and public policy development center with clients throughout the region and beyond.

CGS is hosting a conference of regional leaders Dec. 10 and Dec. 11 focused on how the region can adjust to the new economic realities of the 21st century and how area residents can prosper within these realities.

The art competition reflects the focus of this event and should interpret its theme of “Returning Prosperity to America’s Heartland: Building a Shared Vision for our Region’s Future.”

Art work must be submitted by Tuesday, Dec. 8. Submitted work will be displayed during the conference. The jury panel will include faculty members of NIU’s School of Art and a CGS representative.

Winning pieces will be incorporated into the conference proceedings and provide an important and unique visual component to the event. The winning artists will be invited to a gala dinner and celebration scheduled for Friday, March 5, 2010.

Details on the art competition, including rules, regulations and registration forms, are online.

USOAR proposals invited

NIU’s Committee on the Undergraduate Academic Environment (CUAE) is seeking proposals from undergraduate students for the 2009-10 USOAR awards. The deadline for students to submit 10 copies of their proposals to the appropriate college office is Wednesday, Dec. 2.

The USOAR program provides funds to students to carry out an independent artistry or research project under the guidance of a NIU faculty or staff member. 

All undergraduates in every major are eligible to apply. Students must be available to carry out their USOAR project during part or all of the period March 1, 2010, through Feb. 28, 2011. Students can receive up to $2,500 to fund their independent artistry or research project. Proposal materials can be found online.

Information sessions are scheduled from 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14, and Thursday, Oct. 15, in Room 405 of the Holmes Student Center. Current USOAR students will share experiences and projects. For more information, contact Julia Spears at (815) 753-8152 or

College of Business club
to host scholarship dinner

The Northern Illinois University Executive Club will hold its 11th Annual Scholarship Dinner Dance Saturday, Nov. 7, at the Oak Brook Hills Marriot Resort.

The event raises funds for scholarships for students attending the NIU College of Business.

The black-tie optional event begins at 6:30 p.m. with a reception and silent auction, followed by dinner and a live auction at 7:30. Entertainment and dancing will commence at 9 p.m. For more information, or to purchase tickets, contact NIU’s College of Business alumni office (815) 753-1433.

Established in 1996, the NIU Executive Club is an alumni organization specifically designed for business executives. It was formed to bridge the business community and the NIU College of Business, providing opportunities for networking and professional development for alumni and business students alike.

Annuitants Association president
to hold meet-and-greet Nov. 11

NIU Annuitants Association President Linda Schwarz will hold a meet-and-greet with coffee from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 11, at Barnes & Noble, 2439 Sycamore Road in DeKalb. Refreshments are provided by the NIU Credit Union.

October is LGBT History Month

LGBT History Month this year will feature several NIU faculty presentations along with the popular "Do Ask, Do Tell" sticker day and annual Creating Community fall reception.

Faculty presentations include:

  • Tuesday, Oct. 20: “Ann and Myself: Rhetoric, Sexuality, and Silences at Lowell”
  • Tuesday, Oct. 27: “She Prefers Girls: Making Sense of Teen Girls’ Same-Sex Desire in the 1950s”

Full details about these and all other events are available by calling (815) 753-5428, e-mailing or visiting the LGBT Resource Center Web site.

Community School workshop
teaches craft of Pysanky eggs

Learn to design one-of-a-kind eggs, which can be given as gifts, kept as family heirlooms or treasured as holiday decorations.

The NIU Community School of the Arts is offering a workshop, Creating Pysanky Eggs. The class meets from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 21, in the Visual Arts Building. The workshop is for anyone ages 13 through adult.

Egg decorating is a skill that has been handed down through many generations, usually from mother to daughter. Pysanky are Ukrainian/Polish eggs, decorated using beeswax and dyes that are applied in layers.

Students learn to decorate eggs using two different styles of Pysanky: the Polish drop/pull folk style and the Ukrainian method, which uses the delrin kista tool. Both use hot wax applied to the egg surface and color dye baths. The fee includes the cost of materials.

The class is ideal for mothers and daughters or for friends; there is a discount when two people register together.

Instructor Billie Giese is an associate professor of drawing in the NIU School of the Art.

For registration forms or information about this and other programs of the NIU Community School of the Arts, visit or call (815) 753-1450.

Blood drive scheduled

Phi Sigma Biology Honors Society, the Pre Professional Association and the Chemistry Club will host a blood drive from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20, in the Holmes Student Center Capital Room.

Refreshments will be provided after the donation, and every donor will receive a free pair of flannel pants.

To schedule a time to donate, contact Kate Krise at (815) 821-5688 or by e-mail at Walk-ins also are welcome.

International Programs hosts
series of brown bag lunches

The Division of International Programs will host its Fall 2009 Brown Bag Series from noon to 1 p.m. Thursdays in Faraday West, Room 300.

Attendees are invited to bring lunch and listen to speakers covering a variety of topics such as international perspectives, cultural diversity and study abroad experiences.

Upcoming lunches:

  • Oct. 22: Lynn Richards presents “It’s Not Just a Good Idea – It’s the Law”
  • Oct. 29: J.D. Bowers presents “Crossing the Divide: Research, Teaching and Learning in a Divided Society.”
  • Nov. 5: Siew-Sim Chin presents “Being in the World: Narrating the Intersection of Spirituality and Global Identity.”
  • Nov. 12: Shiraz Tata presents “Managing Stress Related to Culture Shock: Going Through the Transacation Process.”
  • Nov. 19: Jean-Philippe Schmitt presents “The Psychological Effect of Studying Abroad.”

For other details, contact Heesun Majcher, director of the International Student and Faculty Office, at (815) 753-8275 or