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Weekly Bulletin Archive


Julie Pelletier receives UMMAA Teaching Award
Julie Pelletier, assistant professor of anthropology, has been named the 2008 recipient of the UMM Alumni Association Teaching Award. A UMM faculty member since 2002, Pelletier has been instrumental in developing the American Indian Studies program at UMM. Thanks to the generosity of the UMM Alumni Association, the Morris campus recognizes its outstanding professors through the UMM Alumni Association Teaching Award, an annual award created by the alumni in 1994. The award honors individual faculty members for their outstanding contributions to undergraduate education.

Asteroid named for PZ Myers
Astronomers have recognized Paul Z. Myers, associate professor of biology, by naming an asteroid in his honor. The asteroid, numbered 153298, is now officially known as “Paulmyers.” The asteroid was discovered on March 29, 2001, by David Healy and Jeff Medkeff at an observatory in Arizona. By longstanding custom, the discoverer of an asteroid has the privilege of proposing a name for it. Medkeff’s naming proposal was approved by the International Astronomical Union, the official governing body for solar system nomenclature, on March 21. A Minnesota Public Radio interview with Myers can be heard at

30th Jazz Fest April 3-5
Jazz Ensembles will host the 30th annual UMM Jazz Fest April 3-5. Several hundred area high school jazz musicians will join UMM and alumni jazzers and two guest artists, during the three-day event. Daytime instructional clinics will pair high school students with guest artists, Byron Stripling and Eric Marienthal. The event will be capped by a public performance, featuring Stripling and Marienthal, each evening at 7:30 p.m. in Edson Auditorium of the Student Center. Admission for each performance is $14 for adults, $8 for children and senior citizens and $5 for UMM students. Read more about Jazz Fest and the UMM Jazz Ensembles. To obtain tickets for public performances contact the Office of Student Activities at UMM, (320) 589-6080.

Undergraduate Research Symposium set for April 4
UMM students will participate in the 8th annual Undergraduate Research Symposium at UMM on Friday, April 4. The event celebrates student scholarly achievement and showcases the variety and quality of research on campus. For a complete agenda and schedule of presentations, visit URS.

UMM at Living Green Expo in May
UMM will participate in the Living Green Expo on Saturday and Sunday, May 3-4, at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds in St. Paul. The free event provides real solutions for people to live better, healthier lives with less impact on the environment.


Carol Marxen, education, was the keynote speaker for the Virginia Department of Education’s Third Annual Rural and Low Income School Symposium held in Roanoke, Va., on March 12. Her presentation, “The Changing Student Face in Rural Communities: Implications for School Leaders‚” was presented to superintendents, principals, Rural and Low-Income School Program coordinators, English as a Second Language (ESL) coordinators and other educational leaders throughout Virginia. Marxen’s research on the impact of the changing demographics in small rural school districts has been supported by The Center for Small Towns.

Eagan Heath, Leann Hedquist, Kristi Kehrwald, Nate Swanson and Sarah Vig presented papers at the 17th Annual Midwest Regional Political Science Undergraduate Conference, held March 14-15 at Wartburg College in Iowa. Heath's paper won first place and Kerhwald, Hedquist and Swanson's papers received honorable mentions. Alex Clausen, Adam Olson and Cody Miller also attended the conference. Authors and titles of the papers were: Hedquist, How Late is too Late: Do Presidential Candidates ‘Dates of Declaration’ Influence the Likelihood of Winning the Nomination?, Kehrwald, Dinner Party Faux Pas: Religious Cues in Party Platforms, 1920-2004, Heath, Global Warming and the Dialectic of Enlightenment, Vig, Crime and Punishment in Law and Order: An Experimperimental Study of Media Effects of Fictional Television, Swanson, The Hagel Effect: Do Party Constituencies Sway Incumbent Senator’s Decisions to Retire? The conference, which included students from 17 different colleges from the Midwest, also included refereed paper awards.

Julie Eckerle, English, has been elected to the Awards Committee of the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women. She will serve a three-year term from 2008-2010.

Chancellor Jacquie Johnson was the guest for a UMM update on the March 17 “Community Connection” program on KMRS Morris radio.

A poem by Vicki Graham, English, "Translating," is published in Avocet, Winter 2008.

UMM alumni enjoyed the opportunity to hear the UMM Concert Choir perform on March 10 in Washington, D.C. Under the direction of Ken Hodgson, the choir gave an early afternoon performance in the Agriculture Committee Room of the Longworth House Office Building on Capitol Hill. The choir again performed that evening at Trinity Lutheran Church in North Bethesda, Md. A number of UMM alumni attended these concerts as did UMM representatives, Susan Schmidgall, external relations, and Carla Riley, alumni relations and annual giving. In addition, Schmidgall and Riley hosted an evening alumni social gathering at Gordon Biersch on March 11 for UMM alumni living in the D.C. area.

Greg Thorson, political science, delivered legislative testimony last week on two health care bills before the House Health and Human Services Finance Committee (Tuesday) and the Senate Health, Housing and Family Security Committee (Wednesday). Thorson's participation on these health care projects has been supported by the West Central Health Care Purchasing Alliance, the West Central Regional Sustainable Development Partnership and The Center for Small Towns.

Twenty young alumni from the Twin Cities area, along with Erin Schellin ’05, alumni relations and annual giving, gathered in Brooklyn Park March 13 to package meal bags to be sent to children in more than 50 different countries through the non-profit Feed My Starving Children. After volunteering, alumni gathered for refreshments and conversation talking with old friends and new while reminiscing about UMM. If you missed out on this young alumni event, be sure to watch the Alumni Relations Web site for upcoming events designed especially for young alumni.

Michael Lackey, English, has been informed that his book, African American Atheists and Political Liberation, will be out in paperback in June. Lackey has also had a paper, titled "Mark Twain, Supersessionist Theology, and the Sacred Imagined Nation," accepted for the 2008 MLA (Modern Language Association) Convention.

Former UMM and Twin Cities faculty member, Barbara M. Posadas, history, has been selected as a 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award recipient by the Association for Asian American Studies.

Bill Salisbury ’69 has received the Graven Award from the Minnesota Journalism Center. The award is given each year to members of the journalistic community whose contributions to excellence in the journalism profession deserve special recognition. Salisbury is a veteran political writer for the St. Paul Pioneer Press and a senior member of the Capitol press corps with a 30-year career covering politics and government. Salisbury was interviewed on MPR’s Midday program.

UMM in the News

[Morris Sun Tribune 3/13/2008] Reducing UMM’s carbon footprint with wind energy, biomass gasifier and other technology is mentioned in “Greenhouse gases on the rise.”

[The Forum 3/16/08] UMM is mentioned in the story, “Ashby 13-year-old ahead of his time: Fitting in.”

[The Fergus Falls Daily Journal, 3/17/08] UMM is mentioned as the location for the high school basketball sub-section competition.

[The Fergus Falls Daily Journal, 3/17/08] This year’s annual Driggs Lecture is referenced in the commentary, “Americans thriftier 50 years ago.”


Coleman in Alexandria Thursday
Republican U.S. Senator Norm Coleman will be in Alexandria at 11 a.m. Thursday, March 27, at the Traveler's Inn Restaurant. His visit is part of his official campaign kickoff tour.

World Touch Cultural Heritage Week events continue through April 1
The annual WTCHW celebration continues through Tuesday, April 1.

Academic Opportunities Expo April 1
Students and advisers: Don’t miss your chance to learn about all the interesting learning options you can do outside the classroom at UMM. The expo showcases academic enhancement opportunities such as internships, UROP, study abroad, service learning, national scholarships and more. Visit the Expo on Tuesday, April 1, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. in the Food Services Bldg. Read more here: Expo.

Annual Planning began March 24
This is UMM's spring advising event for all students. It is your chance to create a long-range plan for your academic program. You will meet with your adviser to discuss goals, choose classes and explore options that will help you meet your goals. Students who have completed fewer than 60 credits are required to meet with their advisers to develop a plan before registering for fall classes. Schedule an appointment to see your adviser or contact the Center for Advising and Learning if you need assistance.

Elementary or secondary education program applicants
You must take PRAXIS I - Pre Professional Skills Test (PPST) before entering either the elementary or secondary education program. The test is offered at UMM on April 26. You must register for this exam by March 27. Also, all education students MUST pass all three areas of the PPST and all required sections of PRAXIS II before a Minnesota teaching license will be granted. Contact Counseling or Pat Nelson in the Education Division Office immediately for information on registering.

On-the-Road alumni event in Sioux Falls
Carla Riley, alumni relations and annual giving, and Susan Schmidgall, external relations, will join fellow alumni and UMM friends for an informal dinner at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, March 27, at Minervas Restaurant, 301 S. Phillips Ave., Sioux Falls, S.D.

“The New Annuals” next on Prairie Yard and Garden
Advances in plant breeding have brought a wealth of new and improved plants to the garden centers to feed our hunger for something different and unusual in our garden. Mary Meyer, University of Minnesota associate professor of horticulture, explains what is going on in the industry and shows off specific selections displayed at the West Central Research and Outreach Center horticulture garden in Morris during the next Prairie Yard and Garden program. “The New Annuals” will air at 7:30 p.m. March 27 on Pioneer Public Television, Appleton.

Chancellor’s Open Office Hours
The next Chancellor’s Open Office Hour is Monday, April 7, at 3:30 p.m. All members of the UMM campus community are welcome to drop in and chat with Chancellor Johnson. Please note: these hours are subject to change. It is recommended that you check the following Web site: Chancellor’s Open Office Hours the day you plan to drop in or call her office at ext. 6020.

Study Abroad Young Alumni gathering
In this upcoming young alumni project, we will reunite faculty, alumni, and current UMM students will reunite during a Study Abroad Young Alumni gathering April 16, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Magggiano’s Little Italy, 2685 Southdale Center, Edina, Minn. UMM faculty Pareena Lawrence, Janet Erickson and Sarah Buchanan, all who have recently traveled abroad with students, will reconnect with young alumni who also studied abroad during their time at UMM. Along with their students, each faculty member will present a short slideshow discussing their traveling abroad adventures. Alumni will have the chance to come back together with faculty, hear stories about current UMM happenings, and meet new and old friends. Please join us to hear about your study abroad trip and other travels by UMM alumni. To RSVP contact Erin Schellin, ext. 6067.

Tinman Alumni Spaghetti Feed
The UMM Alumni Association will host a pre-race spaghetti feed the night before the annual Tinman Triathlon. Enjoy the hospitality of LaFave House from 5-7 p.m. April 25 and carbo load with other alumni participants, family and friends. For more information and to RSVP for the spaghetti feed visit Tinman Spaghetti Feed or contact the Office of Alumni Relations at (320) 589-6066, Alumni Relations. To register for the Tinman Triathlon visit Tinman.

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Weekly Bulletin is the official campus newsletter for students, staff, faculty and friends of UMM, prepared by the Office of University Relations. Each issue features news, accomplishments, UMM in the News and announcements in brief about the University of Minnesota, Morris. The deadline for submissions is noon each Wednesday.

To submit items or direct questions, contact Weekly Bulletin editor, Judy Riley.

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