News Release Archive
February 3, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa mathematics department is sponsoring a statewide contest to encourage Iowa students' enthusiasm for mathematics. Iowa high school students and UNI students are invited to participate in the Wright Challenge, a web-accessible math contest.
Between January and May, six challenging puzzles will be presented. The puzzles can be found on the Web at www.math.uni.edu, in the Northern Iowan and posted on the UNI campus. The first problem is currently available and the solution is due on Feb. 14. The answers can be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or by mail to Doctor E, c/o the University of Northern Iowa Mathematics Department, 320 Wright Hall, Cedar Falls, Iowa 50614-0506.
Prizes will include certificates and over $100 in cash.
The Wright Challenge was created four years ago by Douglas Shaw, UNI assistant professor of mathematics.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Richard Utz, professor of English literature at the University of Northern Iowa, has been named the university's Distinguished Scholar for 2003-2004.
The award, announced late last semester, is presented to a senior scholar or artist who has demonstrated a long and distinguished career of publications, exhibits and/or creative activities. The recipient must have a professional reputation that is national or international and be a member of the graduate faculty with five years of full-time service at UNI.
Utz received his doctorate and master's degrees in English and German philology at the University of Regensburg, in Germany. He has authored numerous publications and his fields of expertise include medieval English language and literature, Arthurian literature, and the history of English studies.
Utz has taught at the University of Northern Iowa since 1991. He also has taught at the University of Tubingen, Padagogische Hochschule Dresden, Williams College and the University of Regensburg.
January 30, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- University of Northern Iowa student Kali Miller, a junior graphic communications major from Allison, recently was part of a UNI Office of University Marketing & Public Relations (UM&PR) team that received a silver award for excellence in multimedia design from the annual competition of the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), District VI.
Miller, a student Web designer in the UM&PR office, created the design of the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC) home page. Other team members included DeWayne Purdy, electronic communications manager and Janelle Barnett, GBPAC marketing director.
There are eight states within CASE District VI, and the competition drew approximately 970 entries this year.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Destiny's Child member Kelly Rowland will be the special guest of Ja Rule in a concert at the UNI-Dome Thursday, Feb. 13. Rowland replaces hip-hop artist Eve.
Upon the success of Destiny's Child's 2001 smash-hit CD, 'Survivor,' Rowland followed her bandmates in pursuing a solo career. In 2002, solo debut, 'Simply Deep,' was released on Columbia Records. 'Dilemma,' the album's first single, featured a duet with Southern rapper Nelly, still receiving strong airplay across the country. Rowland's latest single 'Stole' is No. 20 on the Top 40 charts and her album is quickly climbing on Billboard sales charts.
Along with Rowland will be three other guests: Benzino, Solange Knowles and Charli Baltimore.
Benzino is best known for the recent single, 'Rock the Party,' which hit No. 39 on the urban charts. The new CD, 'The Benzino Remix Project,' debuted at No. 65 on the Billboard charts.
Solange Knowles, sister of Destiny's Child member Beyonce Knowles, released her first CD, 'Solo Star,' on Jan. 21. The single from that CD, 'Feelin' You,' is already at No. 2 on the Billboard dance charts, and No. 12 on the singles charts.
Rapper Charli Baltimore has worked with some of hip-hop's biggest names, including the Notorious B.I.G., and Lance 'Un' Rivera. She released her first solo CD, 'Cold as Ice,' in 2000. Her latest effort, 'The Diary' was released on Def Jam Records this year.
One of the hip-hop world's biggest stars today, Ja Rule's first solo CD, 'Venni Vetti Vecci,' went multi-platinum and featured the singles 'Holla Holla,' 'It's Murda,' and 'Daddy's Little Baby.' His
sophomore solo effort, 'Rule 3:36' debuted in 2000, and went straight to the top of the charts. 'Pain is Love,' released the next year, topped the charts as well. His most recent CD, 'The Last Temptation,' was released in November. He has collaborated on No. 1 singles with Ashanti ('Always on Time') and Jennifer Lopez ('Ain't it Funny').
Tickets, $25 for UNI students and $30 for all others, are available at all UNI ticket outlets. They also are available at tickets.uni.edu, or (319) 273-DOME.
The concert is sponsored by the UNI-Dome and Panther Productions.
January 29, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Robert Drewelow, a University of Northern Iowa junior from Waterloo, was awarded funds from the Merck Co. Foundation to attend the 2003 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting in Denver, Colo., Feb. 13-17. He will present his work at the student poster session on Feb. 15.
The title of his project is 'Expression Cloning and Pharmacological Characterization of a Mammaliam Calcium Channel in Xenopus Oocytes.' Drewelow did the research last summer as part of the Undergraduate Science Research Program funded by Merck/AAAS. He was one of six UNI students selected to participate in the program and one of 25 student program participants nationwide who were selected to attend the Denver meeting.
UNI was one of 15 U.S. colleges and universities that received an award from Merck/AAAS to promote interdisciplinary research experiences among undergraduates.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The Office of University Marketing & Public Relations at UNI recently won three awards during the annual competition of the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), District VI.
A gold award for excellence in fundraising publications went to the publications staff, including Gerald Anglum, Elizabeth La Velle, Randy Darst, Mary Taylor, Denton Ketels and Bev Schomaker for the creation of the UNI Foundation's national campaign kick-off materials.
For excellence in graphic design for the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC) display, a silver award went to Darst and Janelle Barnett, GBPAC marketing director.
A silver award also went to DeWayne Purdy, electronic communications manager, Kali Miller, student Web designer and Barnett for excellence in multimedia for the design of the GBPAC home page.
There are eight states within CASE District VI, and the competition drew approximately 970 entries this year.
The UNI accounting program is ranked second in the nation in first-time pass rate of the CPA exam. Friday and Saturday, Jan. 31 and Feb. 1., UNI will help the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) prepare to launch its first-ever computerized CPA exam
The new exam will be officially introduced in 2004. The AICPA is validating the test at select colleges and universities across the country. UNI is one of those sites. During the next two days, 315 sections of the new, computerized, Uniform CPA Examination will be taken by UNI students.
According to the AICPA, computerization reflects the changes in work performed by entry-level CPAs, acknowledges the need for higher-order skills, and recognizes the integral role of technology in the work of entry-level CPAs.
Dry-run exams will take place both days from 9 a.m. to noon, 1 to 4 p.m., and 5 to 8 p.m. in CBB Room 236.
January 28, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa chapter of Sigma Xi and the UNI College of Natural Sciences will host a presentation by Patricia Quinlisk, state of Iowa epidemiologist, at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 5, in Seerley Hall, Room 115.
Her presentation, 'Everything You Wanted to Know About Smallpox, But Didn't Know Who To Ask,' will cover smallpox, its history and its use as a weapon. She also will provide an overview of the disease, and its prevention and treatment. A question-and-answer session will follow.
The event is free and open to the public. Sigma Xi is a scientific research society.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa --The University of Northern Iowa's Theatre UNI will host the director/designers presentation of the drama 'Roosters, at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 5, in the Bertha Martin Theatre.
Participants will join guest director Kim Hines of Minneapolis and the production designers for a presentation and discussion about the show. Prodcution designers are Mark A. Parrott, scenery; Carmelita Guse, costumes; and Eric Lange, lighting.
Set in the rural Southwest, 'Roosters' is the emotional story about the complex relationships of a Mexican-American family teetering on the edge of explosive conflict. The show opens Monday, Feb. 27.
The director/designers presentation is free and open to the public.
January 27, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Two students from the University of Northern Iowa are the recipients of a $1,000 scholarship. Levi Franzen, a senior real estate major from Elkader and Lisa Gaul, a senior finance major from Strawberry Point, have each been awarded a University Scholarship from the Education Foundation of the Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) Institute.
'The students were selected by the Iowa CCIM Chapter based on a combination of high achievement in academics, leadership and volunteer activities,' said Thomas Nordstrom, CCIM, who is the CCIM Institute's liaison for the University Scholarship Program in Iowa.
In addition to the scholarship, Franzen and Gaul were also awarded free tuition to the CCIM Institute's Core 101 Course: 'Financial Analysis For Commercial Investment Real Estate.' The course is part of the institute's curriculum leading to the CCIM designation, and is valued at more than $1,000.
The CCIM Institute, with over 14,000 members, provides educational programs and services for professionals in commercial and investment real estate as well as allied industries. It awards the CCIM designation to individuals who complete a prescribed series of university-level courses in advanced concepts and techniques in commercial real estate.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Center for Energy & Environmental Education (CEEE) continues the spring 2003 six-film and event series with speaker Wes Jackson on Monday, Feb. 3 at 7 p.m. in Sabin Hall, Room 102. The session's topic is 'A false hypothesis? But what if it is true?'
Jackson is a plant geneticist and president of The Land Institute in Salina, Kansas. He has established and served as chair of one of the country's first environmental studies programs at California State University-Sacramento.
The event is free and open to the public. The series will run through April 12. For more information, contact Kamyar Enshayan, adjunct assistant professor of physics, at (319) 273-7575.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa has announced the new members of the Student Alumni Ambassadors joining spring semester. New members include: __(NAME)__ of __(HOMETOWN)__, a __(CLASSIFICATION)__ majoring in __(MAJOR)__, and minoring in (MINOR) .
Throughout the academic year, Student Alumni Ambassadors meet with current students, prospective students, parents, faculty, staff, alumni and other university guests. The Ambassadors are involved in many events, including the annual New Student Bash, Family Weekend, Homecoming, working with university Preview Days and lead campus tours.
The organization also is involved with community outreach with local elementary schools, the adopt-a-highway program and other community-based organizations.
To maintain membership as an Ambassador, students must hold a 3.0 cumulative grade point average. The Ambassadors must attend meetings twice a month, conduct weekly tours, serve on one committee and assist at special events. The monthly time commitment is approximately 10 hours. The organization is jointly administered by the UNI Office of Admissions, the UNI Alumni Association and the UNI Foundation.
Sara Schuler, UNI admissions counselor and Connie Hansen, UNI campus visits coordinator are co-advisers for the Student Alumni Ambassadors. For more information, call the UNI Office of Admissions at (319) 273-2281.
Note: to obtain a listing of the studets, please contact the Office of University Marketing and Public Relations at 319273-2761.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- University of Northern Iowa student Krista Todd, a senior biology major from Washington, D.C, was recognized at the 2002 annual meeting of the American Society for Gravitational and Space Biology in Cape Canaveral, Fla.
Todd received first place in the undergraduate student poster presentation competition for her entry, and interview relating to 'Simulate Microgravity's Effect on the Contractile Ability of Developing Chick Heart Tissue Explants.' Her research used chick embryos to simulate the impact of gravity on developing heart tissue. The co-authors on the project were Eric Askeland, a senior biology major from Fort Dodge, who helped with additional research this fall; and Darrell Weins, UNI professor of biology.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- 'Moral Womanhood, Race and the Politics of Nineteenth-Century U.S. Women's History' will be the topic of the next CROW Forum lecture, at noon, Monday, Feb. 3, in Baker Hall Room 161 on the University of Northern Iowa campus.
In the presentation, Barbara Cutter, UNI assistant professor of history, will focus on three types of women who were at the center of public controversy during the nineteenth-century: accused murderesses, women who engaged in sexual activity outside of marriage, and female public lecturers. Cutter will explore the relationship between gender ideology and women's lives in the antebellum United States.
Admission is open to the public and free of charge.
The CROW (Current Research on Women) Forum series is sponsored by UNI's Graduate Program in Women's Studies.
The next program in the CROW Forum series will continue on March 3 with 'Mobilizing for Gender Justice: Implementation and Evaluation of the Mentors in Violence Prevention Model on the UNI Campus.'
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Free income tax assistance will be offered this year at the University of Northern Iowa through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Approximately 50 senior and graduate accounting students will provide the assistance.
The program will run from Feb. 3 through April 14, excluding the week of March 17. Sessions are Mondays and Wednesdays from 4 to 5 p.m. in Room 224 of the Curris Business Building.
VITA was established by the Internal Revenue Service to help people who may not be able to afford professional tax assistance. According to Dennis Schmidt, UNI professor of accounting and program coordinator, the program also provides accounting students an experiential learning opportunity as they work with people in actual income tax situations.
Students will be available to prepare federal and state tax returns and answer tax questions. These students have completed a one-semester comprehensive tax course, have received additional training, and have access to a variety of federal and state reference materials.
Those seeking tax assistance should bring wage and earnings statements from their employers (Form W-2), interest statements from banks (Form 1099-INT), dividend statements from corporations and mutual funds (Form 1099-DIV), copies of last year's tax returns (if available), social security numbers for themselves and any dependents, and any other relevant information concerning 2002 income and expenses.
No appointment is necessary. For more information, contact Dennis Schmidt, program coordinator, at (319) 273-2394.
January 26, 2003 - 6:00pm
Today, the United Nations' inspectors in Iraq will release a progress report on that country's compliance with a resolution requiring full disclosure of all weapons of mass destruction. At the same time, the United States continues its build-up of troops and weaponry in the Middle East, preparing for what some say is an invevitable war. Several professors at the University of Northern Iowa are well-versed on various aspects of war, and are available for the media.
The war tradition in Christianity;
Kenneth Atkinson, assistant professor of philosophy and religion, (319) 273-6990
Note: Atkinson also served four years with the U.S. Army during the Cold War inside the Berlin Wall.
Christian perspectives on war, and Christianity and the 'just' war.
Betty DeBerg, head, Department of Philosophy and Religion, (319) 273-6221
Historical, political, strategic and religious aspects of war
John Grinstead, assistant professor of modern languages, and peace activist with Cedar Valley Churches for Peace, and Iowa Voices for a Just Peace in the Middle East, (319) 273-2417
Public relations and war
Dean Kruckeberg, professor of communication studies, (319) 273-2501
Political aspects of war
Steven Lobell, associate professor of political science, (319) 273-2647
Blowback (CIA term for unintended consequences of an action taken by the United States), and Sept. 11 relationship to current crisis
Gerri Perreault, director of leadership studies, (319) 273-6898
Pacifism and perspectives of the 'peace churches' on war
Martha Reineke, professor of philosphy and religion, (319) 273-6233
Political strategies and rhetoric, religious views, social and psychological ramifications, human rights concerns, and dynamics of genocide and/or mass killings
Kent Sandstrom, associate professor of sociology and anthropology, (319) 273-2769
Military and diplomatic history of war
Donald Shepardson, professor of history, (319) 273-2502
Basic training and general leadership preparation of cadets; cannot talk about current war strategy, or comment on any war preparations
LTC. Robert Stavnes, head, Department of Military Science, (319) 273-6220
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The Upward Bound Math and Science Program at the University of Northern Iowa is now accepting applications for its summer residential program. Available from high school guidance counselors and principals, applications will be accepted through February 2003 or until all openings are filled. The math and science program has been awarded funding for 2002-2003 from a grant from the U. S. Department of Education. The program is designed to strengthen the math and science skills of participating students. The goal of the program is to help students recognize and develop their potential to excel in math and science and encourages them to pursue postsecondary degrees in these fields.
Expanding on the success of the well-known Upward Bound programs on college campuses nationwide, the Upward Bound Math and Science Program at UNI encourages high school students to seek post-secondary education in math or science. 'There is a shortage of individuals going into the math and science professions, while the need for such individuals continues to increase,' said Reygan Freeney, director of the UNI program.
Students in the program attend a free six-week summer session on the UNI campus, which includes classes, field trips and a weekly stipend. Up to 45 students will be accepted.
The Upward Bound Math and Science Program has operated on the UNI campus since 1990. Freeney said about 80 percent of the program graduates have gone on to post-secondary education in the math or science area, and the majority of those have gone to Iowa colleges or universities.
For more information, contact a school guidance counselor, call Freeney at (319) 433-1260, or email the program at email@example.com.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- University of Northern Iowa alumni attending or planning to attend a graduate or professional school may apply for a 2003 Merchant Scholarship.
Scholarships are awarded on the basis of ability, achievement, character, potential and service to society.
Application packets may be requested from Howard Barnes, head, Design, Family and Consumer Sciences, University of Northern Iowa, 235 Latham Hall, Cedar Falls, Iowa 50614-0332. Barnes is the chairperson of the four-member 2003 Merchant Scholarship committee.
The completed application form, along with transcripts and three letters of recommendation, must be received by the committee no later than March 1, 2003.
January 23, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa recently awarded the Sperry Scholarship to Matthew Hackman, a freshman business management administration major from Fort Atkinson.
The scholarship, funded through the UNI Foundation, is awarded annually to any incoming or current student, and is based on financial need, scholastic achievement, leadership and citizenship skills, extracurricular activities and community service.
Hackman, the son of John and Sue Hackman, is a graduate of Turkey Valley High School in Jackson Junction, where he was a member of the National Honor Society. He also participated on five sports teams and worked with first-and second-grade students during his senior year in the district's program, 'Students Educating Students' (SES).
The Sperry scholarship covers tuition, fees, room and board and is renewable for up to four years. The scholarship is valued at $8,758 for the 2002-2003 school year.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Regional Business Center (RBC), in partnership with Ketels Contract Training, will offer two computer software training courses this spring.
'Microsoft Access' training will be offered on three consecutive Thursdays, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Feb. 13, 20 and 27. The first module will cover beginning skills. The second module will address intermediate and advanced topics over two class periods. Participants may register for individual modules, or for both at a discounted rate. The course instructor will be Chris Case.
'Microsoft Excel' will run three consecutive Thursdays, April 3, 10 and 17, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The modules will cover beginning, intermediate and advanced skills, respectively. Participants may register for individual modules, or for all three at a discounted rate. This class will also be taught by Chris Case.
All classes will be held at the RBC office, 212 E. Fourth St, in downtown Waterloo. Class sizes are limited to 14. Fees vary. For more information, contact the UNI RBC at (319) 236-8123 or visit www.unirbc.org.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Center for Energy & Environmental Education (CEEE) is hosting a six-film and event series during spring 2003.
The series opens with 'Just eat it!', a film and discussion at 7 p.m., Jan. 30, in the UNI Physics Building, Room 309. The film poses questions about chemical companies that develop crops as drugs, and repercussions from this practice.
The series will run through April 12. All events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Kamyar Enshayan, adjunct assistant professor of physics, at (319) 273-7575.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Ming-Kai Chin, recipient of the 2003 Monica R. Wild and Doris E. White Scholar Award presented by the University of Northern Iowa's School of Health, Physical Education and Leisure Services, will deliver a public lecture during his week-long visit to the UNI campus.
He will speak at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 29, in the UNI Commons Ballroom on 'Promotion of Physical Activity and Wellness in Schools and Community: An Asian Pacific Perspective in the 21st Century.' The address is free and open to the public, and will follow a private dinner and reception.
Chin, principal lecturer in the Department of Physical Education at the Hong Kong Institute of Education, is an expert in cardiovascular, metabolic, respiratory and neurological adaptations to acute and chronic exercise. He also specializes in the inter-relationship of physical activity, health and physical fitness of school children.
As the winner of the inaugural Wild and White Scholar Award, he also will deliver a mini-seminar for faculty and students and speak in classes. The seminar, at 3:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 27, is in Room 252 of UNI's Wellness & Recreation Center. It also is open to interested members of the public. Chin's topic will be 'The Integration of Sports Science Technology and IT in Health-related Fitness and Exercise Physiology in Physical Education.' He will speak about an innovative model at the Hong Kong Institute of Education.
The Wild and White Scholar Award is presented to an individual whose contributions have significantly advanced the cause of the areas of health, physical education, recreation, youth and human services, and whose dedication reflects the same level of commitment by the two former UNI faculty members for whom the award was named. In addition to the lecture and travel to campus, Chin also will receive a certificate honoring his achievements.
The Wild and White award honors Monica Wild and Doris White, early members of the faculty in the Department of Physical Education for Women at UNI. As individuals, Wild was recognized as a pre-eminent scholar, and White as a practical administrator. They were co-authors of the well-known book ''Physical Education for Elementary Schools.''
January 22, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- 'An Evening with Chuck D,' a lecture by rap artist and Internet visionary Chuck D, is the next program for the University of Northern Iowa's 2002-2003 Hearst Lecture Series, at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 29, in the Lang Hall Auditorium. Admission is open to the public and free of charge, with a reception to follow in the Lang Hall lounge.
As leader and co-founder of the legendary rap group Public Enemy, Chuck D redefined rap music and hip hop culture, according to Gayle Pohl, co-chair of the UNI Hearst Lecture Series. 'His explosive messages address sensitive issues such as race, rage and inequality with a shocking sense of intelligence and eloquence.'
The group released seven albums in 13 years, all meeting with critical acclaim from publications such as Time and The Source. In 1999, The New York Times named Public Enemy's music to its list of the '25 Most Significant Albums of the Last Century.'
Pohl says the media has anointed Chuck D the spokesperson and major proponent of music on the Internet. In 1999, he launched a multi-format 'supersite' on the Web, Rapstation.com. His outspoken advocacy of the Web has been profiled in Time, Forbes, USA Today and The Industry Standard. He also was named to Upsider magazine's 'Elite 100' list of Internet leaders, alongside the likes of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs.
This year's Hearst series, subtitled 'Envisioning Communities: Questioning Assumptions,' is made possible through support by the Meryl Norton Hearst Chair in the College of Humanities and Fine Arts, created by an endowment from James Schell Hearst, author, poet and professor of creative writing at UNI from 1941 until his retirement in 1975.
The Department of Communication Studies and the College of Humanities and Fine Arts at UNI sponsor the 2002-2003 Hearst Lecture Series.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Four schools from the North Iowa Cedar League Conference (NICL) will participate in the annual NICL Conference Choral Festival at Northern University High School in Cedar Falls on Monday, Jan. 27. Approximately 350 students and their directors will participate in the festival clinic with guest conductor Michael Reese, from Cedar Rapids Jefferson High School, throughout the afternoon.
The day's events will conclude with a 7 p.m. festival concert in the Nielsen Fieldhouse. In addition to the combined festival chorus, each conference school will perform two selections.
Schools participating in the event are Ackley-Geneva/Wellsburg-Steamboat Rock High School and director Michelle Anthoney; Denver High School and director Mary Stevens; Northern University High School and director Linda Sharp; and Wapsie Valley High School and director Roy Stubbs.
Accompanist for the event is Mabel Rempe. The Northern University High School Chamber Orchestra will also accompany the festival choir.
The concert is open to the public and doors open at 6:30 p.m. Admission is $3. Tickets are available at the door. For more information call (319) 273-6236.
January 21, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Dance Team placed 19th at the Universal Dance Association College National Championship.
The team made its fourth appearance in the annual competition Jan. 9-11 at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, and received an automatic bid into the semi-final round. The team competed in the Division I Dance category and was awarded a superior ranking and plaque.
UNI dance team members include ___NAME___, a ___CLASSIFICATION/MAJOR___ from ____HOMETOWN____.
Competing teams must submit a videotape of a two-minute routine to qualify for and be accepted into the elite competition. UNI Dance Team members choreographed their own routine, a unique quality among teams competing. In addition, the team raised funds for costumes, registration fees, hotel accommodations and airfare. The UNI Dance Team is coached by Jori Wade-Booth.
The final round of the competition will be aired on ESPN later this year. Additional information on the national competition and airdates can be found online at varsity.com.
January 20, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's Department of Residence was the host team for the Midwest Affiliate of College and University Residence Halls (MACURH) annual conference held Nov. 15-17. The conference was attended by more than 600 leaders from 65 colleges and universities in Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota and Manitoba, Canada.
The conference was planned and implemented by students. UNI students who participated in the conference include ___(NAME)___, a ___(CLASSIFICATION/ MAJOR)___ from ___(HOMETOWN)___. In addition, there were almost 200 UNI volunteers. The group was advised by hall coordinators David 'Schimiddy' Schmid, Greg Thompson, Trisha Hoffman, Krista Prather and assistant coordinators Jessie Pondell and Heather Smith. The primary advisor was Scott Mitchell, hall coordinator.
Events at the conference included student leaders presenting successful activities and events that have occurred on their campuses. Participants also shared new ideas to improve their campuses and the lives of the students who live in the residence halls.
Conference attendees also contributed over $700 worth of tools and cash to support the Greater Black Hawk Chapter of Habitat for Humanity.
Note to editors: Students are listed below in alphabetical order by hometown with Iowa residents first.
ANKENY Tara Tyler, junior, elementary education
BOONE Ryan Stone, junior, elementary education
CORRECTIONVILLE Luke Demarest, junior, elementary education
DAVENPORT Lauren Miller, junior, art
DECORAH Lynnette Keune, junior, accounting
DES MOINES Emily Sanders, junior, psychology
DIKE Jenny Rokes, sophomore, history
DUBUQUE Brad Scardino, senior, Public Relations
and Organizational Communication
ELKADER Brandi Henning, junior, speech pathology
FAIRFIELD Katie Doyle, senior, elementary education
FAYETTE Renee Maurer, sophomore, elementary education
HAZLETON Hollie McLaren, junior, management
LAUREL Annie Kimberley, senior, special education
MARCUS John Volkert, sophomore, management
MARION Stacy McEowen, junior, elementary education
MILFORD Brock Holman, junior, elementary education
NEVADA Ashley Kockler, sophomore, general studies
NORTH ENGLISH Chrissy VanBerkum, junior, political science
SIOUX CITY Val Anderson, senior, psychology
WATERLOO Brenda Yuska, junior, elementary education
WAUCOMA Ben Manderfield, junior, construction management
WEST UNION Kassie Osmundson, sophomore, general studies
WINFIELD Maranda Connop, senior, history
CARY, ILL. Sarah Meyer, junior, mathematics
January 16, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Enrollment is now open for the Spring 2003 session of Kindergym, a creative movement program sponsored by the University of Northern Iowa. Kindergym is designed for children ages 2 to 5 years old and their parents. It focuses on the exploration and development of motor skills.
The program will be held Saturday mornings, Feb. 8 through April 12; however classes will not be held March 15 or March 22 due to UNI's spring break. Kindergym is divided into two age groups and meeting times. Four-and five-year-olds will meet at 9 a.m. and two-and three-year-olds will meet at 10 a.m. A parent, or responsible adult, is required to attend the sessions with each child.
UNI students majoring in early childhood, elementary and/or physical education help design the program and lead the group activities.
The registration fee is $25. A t-shirt is also available for an additional $5. For more information, contact Karyn Finn, Kindergym coordinator, at (319) 273-2141, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The University of Michigan is facing challenges to its admissions policies, which some charge unfairly favor students of color. President George W. Bush said earlier this week that he will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down the university's policies.
But Winston Burt, assistant to the president for Compliance and Equity Management at the University of Northern Iowa, said Affirmative Action methods used by universities are imperative to diversity. 'Affirmative Action is an outreach program to minorities and women saying, 'Here are programs we'd like to see you participate in if you meet our requirements.'' You're telling them there's an equal opportunity. Affirmative Action guarantees nothing.'
Burt says that, although many are likening the University of Michigan's approach to a quota program, that isn't the case. 'The quota argument comes from an element that wants to deflect our attention away from the real issue. When you interject quotas into any program, you do, in effect, deny opportunity.'
January 15, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- A University of Northern Iowa professor has received a Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) Award of Merit for 2003.
Teresa Hall, associate professor of industrial technology at UNI, received the prestigious award for her service to SME over the past 10 years. The 50,000-member organization, which is devoted to promoting increased awareness of manufacturing engineering, gave nine 2003 awards worldwide. Hall was the only winner within the Upper Midwest Region (Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Manitoba and Western Ontario in Canada).
'The award is conferred annually to honor outstanding individual SME members who have made valued, balanced contributions to the society's professional activities and growth,' said Wayne Frost, general supervisor for quality assurance at John Deere Waterloo Works and 2002 SME Upper Midwest Region chair. 'The emphasis is on the member's accomplishments as an individual.'
Hall has served SME in several capacities: as faculty adviser for the UNI SME student chapter, liaison to the SME chapters at UNI and Hawkeye Community College, instructor for engineering certification exam preparation courses, and as academic and student development chair for regional faculty advisers in chapter management. She is currently a member of the certification oversight and appeals committee at the international level of SME and chair of the Waterloo SME chapter for 2003.
The award will be formally presented to Hall at the joint meeting of the SME Waterloo chapter and the UNI SME student chapter at UNI on April 8.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa --The next film in the University of Northern Iowa's 'Reel to Real' film series will be 'Lynching: The Heinous Past,' which shows in depth how lynching is not just a harsh chapter in history books. It will include an interview with James Cameron, a man from Marion, Indiana who narrowly escaped being lynched by an angry mob for a crime he never committed. The film will be shown from noon to 1 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 22, in the Maucker Union University Room South.
Guy Sims, associate director of Maucker Union, said the film is part of the year-long Reel to Real film series that presents films worthy of reflection, discussion, challenge and criticism.
The series, sponsored by the Maucker Union Student Activities office, will continue Feb. 19, with 'Beautiful Piggies,' a revealing self-portrait of an overeater.
The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Guy Sims at (319) 273-2683.
January 14, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center, the UNI Regional Business Center, and KBBG are partnering to sponsor the second Minority Business Plan Competition for minority entrepreneurs. The JPEC has committed up to $5,000 to present to a new, for-profit, full-time business start-up located in Iowa, preferably the Cedar Valley, owned and operated by a minority entrepreneur. The deadline for business plan and application submission is March 24.
Interested entrepreneurs should consult the minority business plan guidelines at the UNI JPEC Web site at www.jpec.org or contact Katherine Cota-Uyar, program manager, at (319) 273-7350 or email@example.com.
January 12, 2003 - 6:00pm
The Board of Regents, State of Iowa, will meet at the University of Iowa Wednesday and Thursday, Jan. 15-16. The following are docket items pertaining to UNI, and the individuals who can best address those issues.
UNI capital register
Tom Schellhardt, vice president for administration and finance, (319) 273-2382
Robert Koob, president, (319) 273-2566
Robert Koob, president, (319) 273-2566
Aaron Podolefsky, provost and vice president for academic affairs, (319) 273-2517
Aaron Podolefsky, provost and vice president for academic affairs, (319) 273-2517
Annual diversity deport
Winston Burt, director, compliance and equity management, (319) 273-2846
Suspension of admissions to the M.A. in Political Science program
Aaron Podolefsky, provost and vice president for academic affairs, (319) 273-2517
Economic Development and Technology Transfer report
Randy Pilkington, executive director, Business and Community Services, (319) 273-6941
Report on Regents Minority and Women Educators' Enhancement Program
Aaron Podolefsky, provost and vice president for academic affairs, (319) 273-2517
Report on professional development assignments (PDAs), and requests for PDAs
Aaron Podolefsky, provost and vice president for academic affairs, (319) 273-2517
Robert Koob, president, (319) 273-2566
Affiliated organizations report
Noreen Hermansen, director, UNI Alumni Relations, (319) 273-2355
William Calhoun, vice president for advancement and president of the UNI Foundation,
January 7, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Ja Rule will be in concert Thursday, Feb. 13, at 8 p.m. in the UNI-Dome. His special guest will be Eve. The concert was previously planned for Sunday, Feb. 16.
One of the hip-hop world's biggest stars today, Ja Rule's first solo CD, 'Venni Vetti Vecci,' went multi-platinum and featured the singles 'Holla Holla,' 'It's Murda,' and 'Daddy's Little Baby.' His sophomore solo effort, 'Rule 3:36' debuted in 2000, and went straight to the top of the charts. 'Pain is Love,' released the next year, topped the charts as well. His most recent CD, 'The Last Temptation,' was released in November. He has collaborated on No. 1 singles with Ashanti ('Always on Time') and Jennifer Lopez ('Ain't it Funny').
In addition, the artist made his film debut in 2000, with an appearance in 'Turn it Up.' He later had roles in 'The Fast and the Furious,' and 'Crime Partners 2000.'
Eve gained national exposure in 1998, when a track from her demo tape, 'Eve of Destruction,' was featured on the 'Bullworth' soundtrack. She was later featured on albums by groups such as Roots and BLACKstreet. Her first album, 'Ruff Ryders' First Lady' debuted at No. 1 in 1999. She followed that with 'Scorpion' in 2001, and 'Eve-Olution,' out this year. She made her acting debut this year as well, with a part in the popular comedy, 'Barbershop.'
Tickets, at $25 for UNI students and $30 for all others, will go on sale at 10 a.m., Thursday, Jan. 16 at all UNI ticket outlets. They also are available at tickets.uni.edu, or (319) 273-DOME.
The concert is sponsored by the UNI-Dome and Panther Productions.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa ï¾– 'Fast Trac,' a national training program for new and existing entrepreneurs, will be offered by the University of Northern Iowa Regional Business Center and the Iowa Entrepreneurial Consortium, beginning Saturday, Jan. 25.
This eight-week comprehensive class will allow participants to explore their business concept and growth strategies, gain insight into analyzing financial statements, conduct market research, learn about financing programs and create a business plan. Each session will include classroom instruction, a discussion with an expert from the local business community and an opportunity to network with other Cedar Valley entrepreneurs.
Classes will be held on Saturday mornings, from 8:30 a.m. to noon, Jan. 25 through March 15, at the UNI Regional Business Center, 212 E. Fourth St., Waterloo. The fee for this comprehensive class is $199 per business.
For more information or to register, contact the UNI Regional Business Center at (319) 236-8123 or visit http://www.unirbc.org.
January 6, 2003 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- An 'IRS Small Business Tax Workshop,' will be held Saturday, Jan. 18, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sponsors are the University of Northern Iowa Regional Business Center and the Small Business Compliance Alliance.
Kathy Frey, E.A., and Don Frey, C.M.A., will lead the course, which is designed to assist small businesses in filing their 2002 tax returns. Also, a representative from the Iowa Department of Revenue and Finance will be discussing state sales, use and local option taxes.
The class will be at the UNI Regional Business Center, 212 E. Fourth St., Waterloo. Cost is $35 per participant and includes a light lunch. For more information or to register, contact the UNI RBC at (319) 236-8123 or visit its Web site at http://www.unirbc.org.
December 22, 2002 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa --Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield has committed $250,000 per year for five years, to the University of Northern Iowa John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center (JPEC) to fund loans for the start-up of Iowa businesses.
Venture projects in northeast Iowa will be identified, investigated and recommended by JPEC to Equity Dynamics, a venture capital firm founded by John Pappajohn. Equity Dynamics will review the recommended projects, perform the necessary financial due diligence and, if appropriate, approve funding. Typical funding will be $10,000 to $50,000.
Those with venture projects in northeast Iowa should consult the Dubuque Small Business Development Center at (563) 588-3350 or the UNI Regional Business Center in Waterloo at (319) 236-8123 for information on business plan format and required components.
For more information, visit www.jpec.org; or contact Katherine Cota-Uyar, program manager, at (319) 273-7350 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Toothfairycentral.com, a business started by a part-time University of Northern Iowa student, won one of three $5,000 awards presented Friday, Dec. 13, in Des Moines, at the Third Annual Pappajohn New Venture Business Plan Competition.
Toothfairycentral.com is owned by Glynis Worthington of Waterloo, who started the business, when she could not find the perfect tooth fairy items for her children. The Web site offers tooth fairy boxes, pillows and gifts, certificates of accomplishment for children and a travel log of tooth fairy visits around the world.
The Pappajohn New Venture Business Plan Competition is an annual event held in the fall semester of each academic year. Iowa full- and part-time college students with an original new business idea write a business plan and compete at the regional and state levels for monetary awards to help launch their new businesses. Three $5,000 awards are presented at the state level.
The three state winners were toothfairycentral.com from the University of Northern Iowa; Cactusjo.com, an interactive, multimedia, subscription Web page providing family entertainment, from Iowa State University; and Peace of Mind, which designs, manufactures and distributes affordable infant monitors, from the University of Iowa.
The Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Centers provide a broad range of innovative education programs and support service for students, entrepreneurs and existing business owners. The centers provide expertise in all stages of business planning and development, and serve as vehicles to bring new products and technologies to market.
For more information about the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center, visit www.jpec.org, call (319) 273-7350, or e-mail email@example.com.
December 16, 2002 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Four members of the University of Northern Iowa's Greek community have been inducted into the National Order of Omega Greek honor society. Order of Omega recognizes fraternity and sorority members for outstanding dedication to the university and the Greek community, leadership and academic skills. Members must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.
The four inductees are Chelsea Lechwar , a liberal studies major from Dunlap , Ill. and a member of the Alpha Xi Delta sorority; Kathryn Boston , a public relations major from Waukee and an Alpha Delta Pi member; Kristen Natvig , an elementary education major from Muscatine and an Alpha Delta Pi member; and Kari Millang , an elementary education major from Huxley and a member of Alpha Delta Pi.
December 15, 2002 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- University of Northern Iowa student Michael Minard , a senior real estate major from Elkader , has been named winner of a $1,000 scholarship from the Minneapolis-based Mid-Continent Chapter of the Society of Industrial & Office realtors (SIOR).
The Mid-Continent Chapter is one of 39 SIOR chapters. The society currently has 2,000 member-designees who have passed a series of tests to achieve SIOR designation. Chapter president Ray Reese said that Minard is an 'exceptionally talented individual, and an ideal candidate for carrying forward the standards of the world's leading organization of commercial real estate professionals.'
SIOR scholarships are given annually to a select group of college students to honor their academic excellence and commitment. The scholarship grant includes matching funds contributed by the SIOR Educational Foundation.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Students on the University of Northern Iowa's debate team recently were finalists at three fall tournaments.
On Oct. 19-21, students attended the Emporia State University tournament. Sophomore Kelsey Harr from Windsor Heights , and freshman Rhiannon Vice from Aurora, placed first in the novice debate competition.
On Oct. 25-26, students attended the Macalester College debate tournament. The duo of freshman Melanie Johnson from LeMars and junior Mark Lanngin from Ottumwa placed second, while junior Michelle Kelsey from Ankeny and senior Eric Short from Brookings, S.D. placed third. Lanngin and Johnson also took top speaker honors in the varsity division with first and second place speaker awards.
In the junior varsity debate division, senior Nate Fredericks, from Des Moines and freshman Donnell Minton from Kansas City, Mo. placed first. Minton was the second speaker in the junior varsity division.
On Nov. 9-10, the team attended the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh tournament. Kelsey Harr and Rhiannon Vice won the novice division. Donnell Minton was the first place speaker in the open division.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- University of Northern Iowa faculty and students recently commemorated American Education Week Nov. 18-22 by participating in a variety of events at schools throughout the Cedar Valley.
The UNI students participating as student readers were: UNI golf team member Lindsay Phillips, a junior from Cedar Falls ; Alpha Phi Sorority members Taylor Sullivan , a junior psychology major from Dubuque; and Jen Weber, a senior accounting major from Clive.
Additionally, UNI faculty made presentations at various schools. Among the presenters were: Joel Haack, professor of mathematics; Vergestene Cooper, data technician, department of education; Gloria Kirkland-Holmes associate professor of education; Michael Roth, assistant professor of physics; and Ken DeNault, associate professor of geology.
December 12, 2002 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's College of Humanities and Fine Arts (CHFA) has named three freshmen students as Dean's Scholars.
Dean's Scholars for the 2002-2003 academic year are Dan McCurley from Ankeny, who is considering majors in Spanish education or TESOL; Melanie Ferjak, a music performance major from Forest City ; and Jolene Frantzen, a music composition and theory major from New Hampton.
To qualify for this award, students must be in the upper 15 percent of their graduating class or have an ACT score of 27 or higher. Students must also submit an essay and letters of recommendation from two of their high school teachers.
Recipients of the award are provided with full in-state tuition as well as tickets to UNI Artists' Series events at the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center.
For more information, contact James Lubker, CHFA dean, at (319) 273-2725.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa dance team has qualified for the Universal Dance Association (UDA) College National Championship taking place Jan. 9-11, 2003, at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla. The team received an automatic bid into the semi-final round and will compete in the Division I category against 24 of the top teams in the nation.
Members of the UNI dance team are __ (NAME)__, a __ (CLASSIFICATION/MAJOR)__, from __ (HOMETOWN)__.
To qualify, a team must submit a videotape of a two-minute routine. The UNI dance team is ranked 12 th in the nation after the evaluation of the team's qualification entry. This is the highest ranking the team has received in preliminary competition.
The UNI dance team members choreograph their own routines and raise money for expenses including registration fees, hotel accommodations, airfare and costumes.
The team is coached by Jori Wade-Booth.
Note:to obtain a list of the students, please contact the Office of University Marketing and Public Relaions at 319.273.2761.
December 11, 2002 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Some 650 of the more than 1,000 fall semester candidates for degrees will participate in commencement ceremonies at the University of Northern Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 21, at 11 a.m. in the UNI-Dome.
The ceremony will include students graduating from Continuing Education and Special Programs; the Colleges of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Humanities and Fine Arts, Natural Sciences, Business Administration and Education; and the Graduate College.
UNI President Robert Koob will preside over the ceremonies and confer degrees on the students. Jay Edelnant , professor of performance studies, is the commencement marshal. The recognition of honors and awards will be conducted by Aaron M. Podolefsky, provost and vice president for academic affairs.
The ceremony will begin with a processional, followed by a recognition of honors and awards, a student address by a commencement candidate and the presentation of candidates. Delivering the student address at the ceremony will be Krista Leigh Todd, candidate in biology, from Washington, D.C.
Candidates for degrees will be presented by the deans of their respective colleges: John W. Somervill , Graduate College; Farzad Moussavi (interim dean), College of Business Administration; Rori Carson (associate dean), College of Education; James F. Lubker, College of Humanities and Fine Arts; Kichoon Yang, College of Natural Sciences; Julia Wallace, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences; and, James Bodensteiner (interim dean), Continuing Education and Special Programs.
Gretta Berghammer, professor of theatre, will read the candidates' names, and Marcus Haack of Iowa City, president of the UNI Alumni Association Board of Directors, will welcome the new graduates on behalf of the association. Music will be provided by the University Brass Ensemble, conducted by Rebecca Burkhardt, associate professor of music.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Students on the University of Northern Iowa's Individual Events Speech Team recently placed fifth at the Mid-American Forensic League Tournament, missing fourth place by just one point. The tournament took place Nov. 16 at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.
Several UNI students received individual awards. Amy Larsen, a senior from Ankeny, placed third in impromptu speaking and fourth in informative speaking; Sara Gronstal, a junior from Council Bluffs, placed fifth in poetry interpretation; Danielle Dick, a junior from Dayton, placed second in prose interpretation, and fifth in program oral interpretation; and Phil Rippke, a sophomore from Moville placed fourth in impromptu speaking.
For more information, contact Leah White, director of Forensics at (319) 273-7200.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Students on the University of Northern Iowa's Individual Events Speech Team recently were finalists at the Age of Aquarius Invitational at Ball State University, and the L.E. Norton Invitational at Bradley University.
At the Ball State Competition, Amy Larsen , a senior from Ankeny, placed fourth in communication analysis and was a semi-finalist in impromptu speaking. At Bradley, she won the communication analysis event with a speech analyzing the recent protest of Chevron Oil Company by a group of Nigerian women. At the Ball State competition, Sara Gronstal, a junior from Council Bluffs, placed fifth in informative speaking.
Teams from across the nation attended the Ball State tournament in preparation for this spring's championships. According to Leah White , assistant professor of communication studies, and director of forensics, with the exception of the national championship, the tournament at Bradley University was 'the most competitive and prestigious tournament the UNI team attends.'
For more information, contact White (319) 273-7200
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Theatre UNI's off-Hudson series of staged readings continued on Tuesday, Dec. 3 with Edward Albee's 'The Play About The Baby.'
The play was directed by Jay Edelnant , UNI professor of theatre. Cast members included (NAME), a (MAJOR) from (HOMETOWN). Kiersten Malo of Cedar Falls and Barbara Hess of Sumner were stage managers.
Note: to obtain a list of the students please contact the Office of University Marketing and Public Relations at 319.273.2761.
December 10, 2002 - 6:00pm
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa is ranked fourth in the nation for the total number of students who study abroad among master's degree institutions, according to Open Doors 2002, the annual report on international education published by the Institute of International Education. For the academic year 1999-2000, UNI had 577 students study abroad for credit.
'The increasing interest in study abroad is very good news for our nation,' said Institute of International Education president Allan Goodman. 'It shows that the next generation of leaders will have a greater understanding of the world around us.'
The top 10 master's institutions with study abroad students include, in order: Elon University, 710 students; University of Saint Thomas, 682 students; James Madison University, 658 students; University of Northern Iowa, 577 students; California Polytechnic State University, 556 students; Truman State University, 502 students; Calvin College, 486 students; Villanova University, 449 students; Appalachian State University, 436 students; and Western Washington University, 418 students.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa ï¾– The University of Northern Iowa Global Health Corps (GHC) has been named a Family Friendly Workplace by the Family and Children's Council.
The GHC received the award for its commitment to women, children and families, and for its emphasis on wellness and a family-friendly environment.
About 80 percent of GHC clients are women and children, and include refugees, immigrants, minorities, the elderly, rural farm families, the homeless, and others with special public health needs. Since it began in 1996, GHC has served more than 30,000 at-risk clients.
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Lori Smith remembers, with little fondness, her days as a young girl in physical education class. 'I have nightmares of my childhood phys. ed. class -- and I was one of the athletic kids. I remember those kids who got left out of the games, and how sad that was for them.'
Now a physical education instructor at the University of Northern Iowa's Malcolm Price Laboratory School, Smith is determined to change the course forever. 'I'll never teach the way I was taught. If every kid in my class can't at least attempt what I've planned, then it's not worth putting on my lesson plan.'
So often, she said, K-12 physical education classes focus too heavily on team sports. There's little reason for this, especially once students reach high school. 'Almost half the high school students in the nation don't participate in after-school sports programs, and only 1 percent of the population participates in team sports after age 24. The focus in physical education class needs to be on movement concepts and fitness activities that lead to personal wellness. We should be teaching students how to keep themselves healthy for life. That cannot be done with dodge ball.'
Over the past 20-30 years, physical education has played a smaller and smaller role in the school day. Even though the National Association for Sport and Physical Education recommends children get 60 minutes of physical activity each day, schools continue to cut the time allotted for physical education classes. 'By doing this, we decrease the value placed on physical activity for our youths and adults,' Smith said.
Smith, named the 2001 Iowa elementary physical education teacher of the year, says obesity in this country has reached epidemic proportions. 'It's a societal phenomenon. Technology has made our lives easier, but it has also made us unhealthier. We no longer have to walk to work, or even get up to change the channel. As a result, we've become very sedentary.'
She sites high use of computers and video games as another factor that increases the sedentary lifestyle.
Smith would like to see more schools doing what Price Lab does: offering quality daily physical education for students. 'We are responsible for children's well-being, for teaching them how to take care of themselves. School is a primary place for doing that. And parents and families have to validate that role too, by modeling healthy active lifestyles.'
She continued, 'We've gotten to a point where we just want to take a pill for everything and we don't want to work hard. We're sedentary,' Smith said. 'But my concern is that if we continue with our sedentary lifestyles, we're going to see some severe health issues, like more people having heart attacks in their 20s and 30s.'
Smith and her school are recipients of a $155,000 National School Fitness Foundation research grant that comes in the form of state-of-the-art equipment like universal weight machines, ellipticals and treadmills, and blood pressure and body-fat percentage assessment apparatus. During January, students in sixth through 12th grade will participate in special activities, all designed to teach personal wellness.