Northern Illinois University

Northern Today

In Brief

February 8, 2010

Memorial scholarship created
in honor of Dennis Cesarotti

A memorial scholarship has been established in the name of Dennis Cesarotti, a professor in the NIU Department of Technology who died Jan. 29.

Contributions to the scholarship fund can be sent to the NIU Foundation, Northern Illinois University, Attn: Jon Salvani EB130, DeKalb, IL, 60115. Make checks pyable to the NIU Foundation; write “Dennis Cesarotti Memorial Scholarship” in the memo.

Spring ‘Toolkit’ online

NIU’s Office of Assessment Services presents the Spring 2010 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 previews the Assessment Expo to be held on the morning of Friday, March 19, in the Holmes Student Center Sky Room. It also presents an updated version of Bloom’s Taxonomy, which is used to assess learning outcomes. Assessment outcomes from NIU’s Health Enhancement and the Department of Marketing are featured, along with positive results from last year’s alumni survey.

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

Christian faculty-staff group
to meet Tuesday for prayer

NIU’s Christian faculty-staff prayer group will meet from noon to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 9, in Blackhawk East. For more information, contact Tom Bough at (815) 753-7978 or via e-mail at

International Programs hosts
series of brown bag lunches

The Division of International Programs hosts its Spring 2010 Brown Bag Series from noon to 1 p.m. Thursdays in John E. La Tourette Hall (formerly Faraday West), Room 300. Attendees are invited to bring a lunch and listen to speakers covering a variety of topics such as international perspectives, cultural diversity and study abroad experiences.

  • Thursday, Feb. 11, Soveacha Ros, NIU student, presents “Quality Assurance Implementation at the Royal University of Phnom Penh, Cambodia: Stakeholders’ Perceptions, Practices and Challenges.”

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

Geology hosts spring colloquia

The NIU Department of Geology and Environmental Geosciences has announced dates for its Spring 2010 Colloquia, co-sponsored by NIU’s Graduate Colloquium Committee.

All talks will be held at 4 p.m. Fridays in Davis Hall 308 unless otherwise noted. For directions and updates to the schedule, visit Call (815) 753-1943 for more information.

  • Feb. 12: Michael Bramnik, NIU, “How the Ancient Israelites Perceived Water.”
  • Feb. 19: Liliana Lefticariu, Southern Illinois University, “Oxidation of Sulfide Minerals: From Acid Mine Drainage to Life on Mars.”
  • Feb. 26: Margaret McKee, NIU, “Ice Sheet Fluctuations Inferred from Ice-rafted Debris from IODP Site 1305, Eirik Drift off Southern Greenland, from the Last 1.1 Million Years.”
  • March 5: Kyle Mayborn, Western Illinois University, “Geochemical Constraints on the Late-stage Evolution of Basaltic Magma as Revealed by Composite Dikes within the Kangamuit Dike Swarm, West Greenland.”
  • March 19: Joe Peterson, NIU, “Experimental Taphonomy of Macrovertebrate and Microvertebrate Fossils of the Hell Creek Formation (Latest Maastrichtian) of Southeastern Montana” and Richard Anderson, NIU, “Hafnium Isotopic Compositions of Central American Lavas.”
  • March 26: Jorge Cham, author of “Piled High and Deeper” (a grad student comic strip), “The Power of Procrastination,” hosted by the Department of Physics from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in John E. La Tourette Hall 200.
  • April 2: Douglas Walker, Illinois State Water Survey, title TBA
  • April 9: Chris Greer, NIU, “Recharge Analyses into Shallow Glacial and Deep Bedrock Aquifers Associated with the Troy Bedrock Valley, DeKalb County, Illinois,” and Cheyenne Morgan, NIU, “Assessing the Vulnerability of Groundwater to Fecal Contamination along the Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo, Mexico.”
  • April 16: Harold Rowe, University of Texas, “Evaluation of Late Quarternary Climate using Speleothems.”
  • April 23: Adino Paytan, University of California-Santa Cruz, “Using Isotopes of Phosphate to Trace Phosphorus Sources and Cycling in Lakes.”

Art Museum to host programs
for Pop Culture Exhibition Suite

NIU’s Art Museum has announced several upcoming programs in conjunction with the current Pop Culture Exhibition Suite.

At 4:45 p.m. Fridays (Feb. 12, 19 and 26 and March 5), join art history student John B. Benson at the museum for short informal gallery talks about current exhibitions “Midwestern BLAB! 2” and “ROOT HOG! OR DIE.”

From 12:15 to 12:45 p.m. Monday, Feb. 22, English major Robert Sabala will present “Brave New Word: Comics 2000 - Present.”

At 5 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 25, BLAB! artist Don Colley will give a presentation, “Sketchbooks at Large,” in Room 111 of the Visual Arts Building.

From 2 to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 27, John B. Benson will present “R. Crumb and Underground Comix” at the NIU Art Museum.

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.

Jeans will help promote
eating disorders awareness

Several activities are planned across campus for National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, which takes place from Sunday, Feb. 21, through Saturday, Feb. 27.

To prepare, organizers are inviting different offices, departments, buildings and resource centers to help raise awareness about eating disorders by “hosting” a pair of jeans decorated with positive messages and positive affirmations about body esteem, body image and self confidence.

Some departments plan to decorate their own jeans while others will host already decorated pairs of jeans during the week of Feb. 15 to begin promoting the next week’s events. Posters and fliers will accompany the jeans.

On Friday, Feb. 19, all of the jeans displayed across campus will come to Recreational Services for a larger display open to the entire NIU community.

Students to sell cookies, cocoa
to send child to Camp Speak Up

NIU’s Communicative Disorders Student Association (COMDSA), a group for students interested in learning about communication disorders and their impact on society, will host a hot chocolate and cookie sale from 8 a.m. to3 p.m. Monday, Feb. 22, and Tuesday, Feb. 23, in the Wirtz Light Court.

Proceeds from the sale will help fund a child in need to attend Camp Speak Up at Camp Duncan in Ingleside, Ill.

Camp Speak Up is a week-long overnight camp sponsored by the Special Recreation Association of Central Lake County, Western DuPage Special Recreation Association, and the Central Speech and Language Clinic. The camp combines recreation activities and speech therapy for school-age children who stutter.

Stuttering, a speech disorder characterized by sound and word repetitions (li-li-like), sound prolongations (lllllike) or abnormal stoppages (no sound) that disrupt the typical smooth flow of speech, can greatly impact an individual’s quality of life. Camp Speak Up attempts to build self-confidence in campers while improving their fluency.

For more information about COMDSA or Camp Speak Up, contact Erin Buckner at

Alums invited to Springfield

NIU alumni are invited Wednesday, March 3, to spend a day in Springfield.

The group will explore the beauty of the state’s capital, enjoy lunch at an area restaurant and tour the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.

A 5 p.m. reception in the Lincoln Library Atrium will give alums a chance to meet key legislators and officials, while NIU President John Peters will speak about what’s new at NIU. Light appetizers and open bar included.

A bus package that includes round-trip transportation, tour and reception is $60 for dues-paying members and $65 for non-members. The cost of lunch is not included. The Huskie Bus leaves DeKalb at 9 a.m. and returns at 11 p.m.

Cost for the reception only is $30 for dues-paying members and $35 for non-members.

Registration is required. For more information, visit or call (815) 753-1452.

Alumni Association offers peek
at Canadian Rockies trip online

Prospective travelers can watch a live presentation at 7 p.m. Monday, March 15, detailing the Alumni Association’s upcoming Canadian Rockies Adventure travel program from the comfort of their own computers.

All they need is an Internet and phone connection to hear real-time commentary and ask questions to the presenter about this great destination.

Ice fields, rushing streams, lovely waterfalls, glacial peaks and towering summits are just a few of the scenic wonders in the Canadian Rockies. Explore Vancouver, then leave the road behind and explore the spectacular Canadian Rockies via rail. Bow Falls and the Hoodoos (the “Land of the Sleeping Giants”) are among the highlights of the stay in Banff, Alberta.

For more information, visit Registration for the free Webinar is available online.

Academic Convocation 2010 seeks
proposals for project presentations

NIU’s Academic Convocation committee is seeking proposals for faculty/student academic and research project presentations for the 2010 Academic Convocation to be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Aug. 20, in the Convocation Center.

The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, March 31. Submit proposals to Academic Convocation Committee, c/o Marianne Spring, Student Affairs, AL 208, or fax to (815) 753-5100.

Academic Convocation is an opportunity to showcase faculty/undergraduate student academic and/or research projects to 3,000 new students and 150 faculty colleagues. Submissions from every discipline are encouraged. Student and faculty team members must be available to present for five minutes.

The theme for the 2010 Convocation is “A Just Community,” which is a place where all people are valued and supported while they learn from the diversity of the NIU community.

Committee members will make presentation selections based on the following:

  • A one-page proposal describing the collaborative project.
  • A description of the positive student/faculty interaction that resulted from the project.
  • A statement of how incoming students can become involved in undergraduate academic and/or research projects in your college.
  • A list of grant funding, awards or special recognition for the project (lack of funding or previous awards will not eliminate projects).

Visit for more information.

Nehring Gallery features
DeKalb Ag memories

“DEKALB Ag Memories” is on exhibit through April 21 at the Nehring Gallery in downtown DeKalb.

Collaborating on the project with the DeKalb Ag Alumni Association Board of Directors, Nehring Gallery director Anna Marie Coveny says the exhibit underscores the history and legacy of the Ag.

A raffle will be held to benefit the gallery and features two prizes – “The Story of the DeKalb Ag” by Thomas H. Roberts Jr., and a masonite sign of the winged-ear logo.

A reception will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 7. Gallery hours are from 2 to 4 p.m. Sundays (except April 4), 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays and by appointment – contact (815) 758-6363 or Group tours are encouraged. 

A series of free Wednesday noon gallery talks are scheduled. Topics focus on the many contributions of DeKalb Ag to worldwide agriculture.

  • Feb. 10, “The Seeds Are Sown: The Gunn Legacy” presented by Dave Smith – How the decisions were made to start Charlie Gunn’s hybrid research program and why it was so secretive. 
  • Feb. 24, “Early Production Plant Expansion: The Roberts Touch,” presented by Al Golden – Tom Roberts’ decision – where to build new production plants and how they were financed. Al Golden.
  • March 10, “Sales and Marketing Innovation: Always on the Cutting Edge of the Strategies and Tools to Maximize Sales” presented by Greg Olson – industry-leading new ideas on how to market a new product. 
  • March 24, “The XL Explosion: Research Pays Big Dividends” presented by Bill Crum and Emerson Wells – a whole new line-up of XL hybrids results in record sales numbers. 
  • April 7, “DeKalb Ag: More Than Corn” presented by Rich Ryan and Jack Nelson – a look at all the various products and businesses in which the Ag was involved. 
  • April 21, “The Winged Ear: Its flight Around the World and Into the Future” presented by Ed Eggers and Charlie Krull – the foreign fields where the winged ear has flown and where it is headed in the future.

Board members will be present on these Wednesdays to give tours and answer questions. More information about the DeKalb Ag Alumni Association can be found at

The Nehring Gallery is located at 111 South Second St. in the Nehring Center for Culture and Tourism. The gallery is free and open to the public. The accessible entrance is located under the Nehring Gallery awning.

Nehring Gallery is operated cooperatively by the DeKalb Park District, the NIU College of Visual and Performing Arts and the NIU Division of University Outreach. The operation of the gallery is partially funded by the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency. For further information, visit

Secretary of State’s mobile office
visits NIU 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 an organ and tissue donor 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. Monday, Feb. 8, in the lower level of the Holmes Student Center. Other spring dates include Monday, March 15, and Monday, April 19.

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.

Farewell reception planned
for LGBT’s Margie Cook

A farewell reception will be held Thursday, Feb. 18, in honor of Margaret “Margie” Cook, director of the NIU Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Resource Center.

The event takes place from 3 to 6 p.m. in the Chandelier Room of Adams Hall.

Cook began her career at NIU in 1994, serving in various positions across campus before becoming the director of the LGBT Resource Center upon its creation in 2003. She has accepted a position as assistant director of the Center for Student Diversity at The College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Va.

PCSW luncheon to feature
Lincoln Laureate Shay Galto

NIU’s Presidential Commission on the Status of Women will host its monthly networking luncheon from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Feb. 19, in the Chandelier Room of Adams Hall.

Shay Galto, a senior at NIU and the recipient of last fall’s Lincoln Laureate, will speak about her research on genocide in Cambodia.

Reservations are required and must be made by Monday, Feb. 8. Reservations can be made by phone at (815) 753-9824 or by e-mail at

PCSW invites award nominations

NIU’s Presidential Commission on the Status of Women is seeking nominations for three staff awards: the Wilma D. Stricklin Award, the Outstanding Mentor Award and the Women Who Make a Difference Award.

The Wilma D. Stricklin Award is presented each year to one individual; the Outstanding Mentor Award and the Women Who Make a Difference Award are presented each year to one or two NIU civil service, supportive professional staff or faculty employees.

Nominations are open through Friday, Feb. 19. Contact with any questions.

For more information on PCSW and its annual awards, or to nominate someone for an award, visit

OSC invites award nominations

The Outstanding Service Award is presented each year to up to four NIU Civil Service employees.

It recognizes individual Civil Service employees who have demonstrated outstanding service and have made significant contributions to the university community.

A plaque will be presented to each recipient of the award at the annual Operating Staff Service Awards Banquet in the spring and a $1,500 award, which is considered taxable wages and subject to payroll deductions, will be received by the Outstanding Staff Award winner shortly thereafter.

Nominations may be submitted by any current or retired employee of NIU. Nominees must be full- or part-time, status Civil Service employees who have been continuously employed at NIU on or before Feb. 1, 2004. Employees who were laid off, on leave, or hold less-than-12-month positions are eligible. Employees who will retire before July 1, 2010, are eligible.

The award may only be received once by an employee. Nominations will be reviewed by a selection committee comprised of Civil Service employees who are designated representatives of their respective NIU divisions.

Nomination packages containing the nomination form, one nomination letter and two letters of support must be received in Human Resource Services no later than 4:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 26.

Valentine’s Day cookies on sale

The Chandelier Room Catering Corps will sell Valentine’s Day cookies again this year. 

Cost is $8 per dozen. Cookies are boxed by the dozen and must be picked up between noon and 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 12, in the Chandelier Room, Adams Hall 143. 

To order by Monday, Feb. 1, visit

Author to speak on book
about African-American girls

The NIU Department of Sociology’s annual graduate colloquium will feature Jody Miller, author of “Getting Played: African American Girls, Urban Inequality, and Gendered Violence.”

Miller will speak about her book from 2 to 4 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 18, in the Clara Sperling Sky Room of the Holmes Student Center. Her research on gender, crime and victimization investigates an important social problem, and her presentation will engage general and academic audiences alike.

“Getting Played” was a finalist for the 2008 C. Wright Mills Award, one of the most prestigious honors in the field. Miller is also author of “One of the Guys: Girl Gangs and Gender” and is currently working on a book titled “Brothels, Bus Halts, and Beach Boys: The Gendered Organization of Sex Work in Sri Lanka” on women’s experiences with the commercial sex industry in Sri Lanka.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, call (815) 753-0365.

‘Project Prom’ urges women
to donate gowns, accessories

The NIU Honors Program and Women’s Resource Center are teaming to collect gently used formal gowns and other accessories to give local girls the chance to attend prom in dresses that make them feel beautiful.

On Sunday, Feb. 28, the “Project Prom” organizers will transform Conexiün Comunidad, 637 N. 11th St., into a boutique and invite local girls to come and select gowns, formal jewelry, handbags and shoes for free.

Donations are being accepted until Thursday, Feb. 25, at the Honors office (Campus Life Building 110) or the Women’s Resource Center, 105 Normal Road. For more information, or to arrange for a pickup, contact Kate Braser at or (815) 753-9505.

Faculty Development to honor
outstanding graduate TAs

NIU’s Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center is seeking nominations for the 2009 Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Awards. The call for nominations is available online.

Nominations are due Friday, March 5.

These awards acknowledge and recognize outstanding graduate teaching assistants for their contributions to the teaching mission of NIU. Each recipient of the award will be presented with a plaque and recognized at the Graduate Student reception sponsored by the Graduate School at the end of the spring semester. At least one will be presented to an outstanding teaching assistant pursuing a master’s degree.

To be eligible for this award, each candidate must

  • be enrolled as a graduate student in good standing at NIU during the semester the award nominations are due,
  • have been employed as a graduate teaching assistant for at least two complete semesters (excluding the semester of nomination) during the past two years at NIU,
  • have been responsible for teaching a course fully or teaching-related support that involved student contact as part of the graduate teaching assistant employment, and
  • have not previously received this award at NIU.

Each academic or academic support unit that employs graduate TAs for teaching and related activities is invited to nominate two outstanding graduate teaching assistants (one at the master’s level and the other at the doctoral level) from its department for the awards.

Nominations submitted to the Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center must include supporting documents to be considered for the award. The nominations can be submitted by the head of the unit or designee, and each nomination should include five hard copies of the following:

Nominee information - name, degree, major, phone, e-mail address, department where graduate teaching assistantship was/is held, semesters and years employed as a GTA in that department, course(s) responsible for as a GTA, and responsibilities handled (primary responsibilities for teaching, tutoring, recitation, lab development or supervision, etc.).

Nominator information - name, title, department, phone, e-mail address, how long have known the nominee, and in what capacity related to the nominee’s GTA responsibilities.

Reasons for nomination - explain the nominee’s outstanding contributions as a GTA at NIU, impact on the course(s) handled by the nominee and the students, efforts made by the nominee to improve teaching by participating in TA development programs, etc.

Supporting documents - evidence of outstanding teaching or related support, such as student evaluations, reviews by supervisors, department/college recognition, etc.

A subcommittee of the Faculty Development Advisory Committee will review the nominations and select the recipients of the award. The committee may request additional information or clarifications from the nominees or nominators.

Submit nominations to the Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center, 319 Adams Hall. Call (815) 753-0595 for more information.