Thursday, February 4, 2010

Hilltopper Advising Center maintains focused mission, flexible approach

Flexibility and teamwork are hallmarks of the campus’ advising center approach as it continues to strive to best meet the needs of OU-C students. The center, located on the second floor of Bennett Hall, was launched just prior to fall quarter 2008 to centralize advising services and make them more convenient for students. “We are always looking at where we best fit in the campus’ educational mission,” Academic Advisor Cristy Null said. “The advising center can impact a student’s overall college experience, and we want to make sure that we make a positive impact. Our focus is on helping students take the necessary steps to achieve success, and that often involves taking a look at what hurdles may be in the way and helping the student make certain adjustments.” Besides Null, other academic advisors currently include Martha Tonedo, Donna Patterson and Susan Long. The center’s mission is centered on student success. It is suggested that students see their advisors early and often to ensure they are on the right track. However, many times the center’s advisors first contact with a student is having a particular difficulty. For example, all students whose cumulative GPAs drop below 2.0 and are on academic probation are required to meet with an academic advisor. “These types of situations offer an opportunity to talk with the students, determine what is causing the difficulty and develop a strategy for success. This is not a punitive move, but an effort that is intended to help students have successful academic careers,” Null said. “Often, there are some steps a student can take to improve his or her situation that are relatively easy to implement. Sometimes the students may be taking too many classes while trying to balance work and academics. Or, it may be that he or she is taking two courses that require extensive reading during the same quarter. We are looking to get students back on track and working toward completing their academic degrees.” Hours of operation for the center, which has been renamed the Hilltopper Advising Center, are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, and 8 a.m. to 6:30 pm. Monday and Thursday to accommodate the schedules of students with evening classes. The center has been busy this academic year, with nearly 2,200 visits from July through mid-January. The advisors often are called up to help students identify and achieve their college goals. “OU-C has bright students who are focused on success. As academic advisors, it is our job to help the students figure out how they can use the OU-C educational experience to find a career that matches their interests,” Null said. “After they graduate, we want our former students to be excited about their jobs and to look forward to going to work. We help the stop and think about why they are drawn to particular professions. One step is to help them take a realistic approach about the daily demands of their chosen field to see if it is a good fit for them.” The Chillicothe Campus is a distinct learning community. OU-C students often have to go the extra mile, literally and figuratively, in their college journeys. “An interesting aspect of working at OU-C is the blend of backgrounds that are brought by traditional and non-traditional students. That helps to make our campus unique,” Null said. “Many of our students commute long distances and several are balancing family and job responsibilities. It can become difficult for them to manage a full academic load. Also, many are first-generation students and cannot rely on their parents to share experiences on how to succeed in college. That’s where we step in to offer the tips they need to succeed,” Null said. Cooperation and collaboration are two keys to the advising center’s effectiveness. “This is a team effort that involves individuals across campus, including my co-workers in Student Services and faculty members,” Null said. To keep the lines of communication open, the center has begun a quarterly newsletter that is distributed to all enrolled students. Also, faculty members are invited to join the staff’s weekly advising meetings to share insights. “We look to expand our dialogue with faculty members so that they are aware of what services we have to offer and we better understand their programs.”

Panel discussion to explore if science and religion can coexist

A panel discussion offering a range of perspectives will discuss the roles of science and religion in people’s lives at 7 p.m. on Feb. 18 in the Bennett Hall auditorium at Ohio University-Chillicothe. “Let’s swim together: The peaceful coexistence of science and religion,” which is part of the Kennedy Lecture series, is free and open to the public. Keynote speaker Michael Zimmerman of Butler University will present the view that an individual’s study of science, particularly evolution, does not need to interfere with his or her religious views that may run contrary to what is taught in scientific textbooks. OU-C Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences Robert Moats will provide the perspective of a scientist, and recent OU-C graduate Julie VanHoose will present the fundamentally religious viewpoint. After delivering their remarks, the panelists will then respond to questions from each other and from audience members. Zimmerman is dean of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and professor of biology at Butler University in Indianapolis, Ind. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. from Washington University. In 2004, he organized the Clergy Letter Project, which involved more than 12,000 Christian clergy members endorsing a document stating that they believe that “the timeless truths of the Bible and the discoveries of modern science may comfortably coexist.” The Kennedy Lecture Series strives to bring esteemed speakers to campus to share their perspectives and insights. The lecture series supports the campus’ emphasis on providing campus and local community residents with activities that add to the richness and vibrancy of the entire community.

OU-C theater program to present encore performance of Fall Collection & The Quick-Change Room

The Ohio University-Chillicothe theater program will present two performances during winter quarter, including an encore performance of Fall Collection on Feb. 12 & 13, and The Quick-Change Room on March 19 & 20. All performances begin at 8 p.m. in the Bennett Hall auditorium.
Tickets are $10 for adults, $9 for senior citizens, free for OU-C students and are available at the Bennett Hall Information Desk during business hours and at the OU-C Box Office the evenings of performances. Group rates of $8 per ticket are also available.
Fall Collection, a thought-provoking drama that is written and directed by OU-C faculty member Ken Breidenbaugh, was originally performed in November and is being staged again by popular demand.
Set in Indiana, the play concerns Edith Whiting, an old couturier whose life has been spent selling and enjoying ultra high fashion. With her sister, who is now gone, she has operated a dress shop in a small town for 50 years. Now, in her 80th year, Edith finds herself having to decide what to do with her own extensive personal collection of important clothes. Should she give the articles to a professional collection of fashion housed at a state university?
Her decision is complicated by the recent arrival of a man whose past astounds her, by a local museum member whose driving ambition has been to pry the clothes from Edith’s home and by the director of the costume collection at the university. Old Mr. Kellough, a gentleman farmer and lifelong friend, assists in the quandary, as does William, Edith’s nephew.
The Quick-Change Room is a comedy set in 1991 in St. Petersburg, Russia, that portrays the theater company’s struggles to learn the rules of commercialism as the Soviet government is toppled. More information on the play will be forthcoming closer to the date of the performance.
Actors rehearse scenes from Fall Collection. In the photo on the left, cast members include (from left) Carly Joseph, playing the role of Audra, Rachel Abbot as Vivian, Dan Jalbuena (standing) as Will and Tyler Stewart (seated) as Henry Plum.
In the photo on the right, cast members (from left) Carly Joseph, playing the role of Audra; Rachel Abbott, as Vivian; and Tyler Stewart (sated), who plays the role of Henry Plum, rehearse a scene. The OU-C theater program will present an encore performance of the play at 8 p.m. Feb. 12 & Feb. 13.
Below is a quick video peak of actors reading their lines for The Quick-Change Room:

Discussion to focus on heart-health issues

OU-C nursing faculty members Lisa Kauffman and Vicky Parker will share tips for living a healthy lifestyle during the “Healthy Heart, Healthy Life” brown bag lunch at noon Feb. 10 in Bennett hall room 134. The event, which is sponsored by the OU-C Health & Wellness Committee, is part of a series engage campus members in discussions involving topics that are particularly relevant and which can help individuals lead healthier lives. The event is free and open to the public.

Upcoming Campus Events

• Academic Council meeting at noon on Feb. 9 & 23 in Bennett Hall room 105 • Administrative Council meeting at 9 a.m. on Feb. 11 in Bennett Hall room 105 • Opening reception for Tolerance III art exhibit at 6 p.m. on Feb. 5 in Patricia Scott Art Gallery in Bennett Hall • OU-C women’s basketball game vs. Miami-Hamilton at 1 p.m. on Feb. 6 in Shoemaker Center • OU-C men’s basketball game vs. Miami-Hamilton at 3 p.m. on Feb. 6 in Shoemaker Center • OU-C theater program presents encore performance of Fall Collection at 8 p.m. on Feb. 12 & 13 in Bennett Hall auditorium • Michael Zimmerman delivers Kennedy Lecture on compatibility of Darwin (science) and religion at 7 p.m. on Feb. 18 in Bennett Hall auditorium. Reception at 6 p.m. in Patricia Scott At Gallery • “Lunch and Learn” with Tony Hunt at noon on Feb. 26 in the Stevenson Center Learning Commons. Topic: “A Year After – Obama and Holding on to Hope.” • OU-C theater program presents The Quick-Change Room at 8 p.m. on March 19 & 20 in the Bennett Hall auditorium