Saturday, October 10, 2015

Sharles' Study Abroad: Study at the Farm

One of the groups at De Klinker had the opportunity to go on a field trip this past week.  This group went to a local family owned potato farm. This field trip had numerous educational benefits that would assist in not only authentic student learning but also student demonstration of independence and self competence.

The students learned first hand the processes that go into growing, harvesting, and supplying potatoes to the public. The students were able to help sort the potatoes from the unusable roots before going into refrigeration. Once in the cooling rooms, the students were amazed by the massive amounts produced from the harvest. They even had opportunity to harvest their own stockpile of potatoes to take home to their families. They were introduced to “experts” of the trade who were able to help the children understand key ideas and answer any curious questions. This experience has led the students to think deeper about how the potato gets from the ground and into their homes.
IMG-20150929-WA0019
20150929_140759The student age in this group can range anywhere from eight to ten years old. At this point in childhood, the student enjoys demonstrating their own independence. Usually in classrooms teachers will scaffold this developmental need by assigning certain tasks that students can successfully complete on their own or with the help of their peers. For this particular trip, the students were able to carry out major independent actions. The first came with riding their bicycles. Each student would ride their bicycles to school and then depart as a class towards the farm. After being guided as how to safely ride on the public transportation routes, the students gladly took their spot in a double file line following their teacher.  This was the same strategy followed for the trip back to the school. I think it is important to note that the students have certain experience when cycling. The culture itself relies heavily on this mode of transport. Another form of independence came with the harvesting of the potatoes. The students were able to work and provide food for their families by digging up their own potatoes. They showed much ownership of their fruit of the field when reunited with their families at the end of the school day. These actions are preparing the children for adulthood by providing them with specific life long skills such as work ethic and determination. This just goes to show that every lesson we teach our students can and should be related to real life experiences. In essence, the students will use these tools to create a better community in which they live in the coming future.



20150929_121934From this experience I have had the opportunity to see through a different perspective. I realize that there are things that hinder the classroom from traveling various places. These things may include absence of funding, restricted permissions, lack of transportation or even school safety precautions. Perhaps the most common is the funding issue. Although funding may lack, there are certain steps that can be taken to produce an authentic learning experience as in this day’s experience. This teacher did not let these issues hinder her desire for an authentic learning experience and this should be the same for all teachers who see potential with local opportunities. With this in mind, I do realize that in the states, we would not be able to simply ride our bicycles to a near by destination. Our culture isn’t set up for such an endeavor. However, perhaps thinking of our students first can motivate our planning procedures. What can we do as the guides of our students’ learning experiences that will cause them to explore their potential? What can we do within the classroom that will allow them to seek more than the adequate amount of knowledge?

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Shoemaker pedestrian bridge ribbon-cutting celebrates connections between campus and community

OU-C Director of Facilities Management Dave Scott (left), Dean Tuck, Mayor Everson and Ohio University Executive Dean of Regional Higher Education Bill Willan with the symbolic ribbon-cutting.



A ribbon-cutting event was recently held to celebrate OU-C’s new Shoemaker Center pedestrian bridge as well as the practical and symbolic significance of the new structure.

The 70-foot span connects the Shoemaker Center with the upper level parking lot and is heavily used by campus and community members attending athletic and other events such as graduation in the center, as well as using its fitness equipment and popular walking track.

“We celebrate the completion of a new pedestrian bridge and the symbolism that transcends the physical structure,” OU-C Dean Martin Tuck said.

“In many ways, this structure represents the mission of the Chillicothe Campus. Since the Shoemaker Center is utilized by so many individuals and for such a variety of events, the bridge spans the campus and the community, both literally and figuratively.”

“So, the bridge, as well as the activities within the Shoemaker Center, provides a daily reminder of the connection between the campus and the community it serves. More than a regional campus, we want to truly be a campus of the region, and this bridge captures that spirit in many ways and reminds us of the value in staying connected.”

Chillicothe Mayor Jack A. Everson delivered a proclamation on behalf of the city. The mayor is an OU-C alumnus and former Hilltopper basketball player during his college days.

“As a regional campus, OU-C has a special relationship with the region it serves,” the mayor said in reading the proclamation. “Most Chillicothe Campus students are from this region. Further, after earning their college degrees, most of these individuals have then pursued their professional aspirations in this area.”

“Beyond academic programs, OU-C looks to add to the vitality of the region by providing other resources. Many area residents will cross this bridge to visit the Shoemaker Center and attend events or use its facilities,” the mayor said.

The revamped bridge includes new features such a steel roof that will not only shelter individuals from the elements but will also  reduce the need to apply salt in inclement weather, thereby extending the life of the structure.

Further, the bridge is fitted with laminated glass panels that feature the campus name and logo. The structure is visible throughout campus, and this allows it to serve as an attractive focal point as well as extend the campus’ appeal.

The original structure was built in 1979 and reinforced in 2005.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Author Judy Fradin to discuss impact of non-fiction children’s books


Author Judy Fradin will lead a discussion on the charm of non-fiction children’s books at 1 p.m. on Oct. 15 in Bennett Hall room 134. The event, which is sponsored by OU-C’s Culture Committee, is free and open to the public.

Fradin, along with her late husband, Dennis Brindell Fradin, wrote a number of children’s books that deal with actual historical events and individuals. They won a number of awards, including the Smithsonian Book of the Year designation in 2001 for Ida B. Wells: Mother of the Civil Rights Movement. They also won the American Library Association award in 2005 for The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine.

The Fradins have often examined the lives of actual individuals who have played prominent roles in shaping history.

The book on Ida Wells drew on actual diaries and letters to tell the story of the journalist in her quest to fight against the segregationist Jim Crow laws, which were abolished in the 1930s. Wells boldly spoke out against atrocities after her friend was killed by a white mob because his grocery story was apparently too successful.

The Power of One explores the life of Daisy Bates, who co-founded the Arkansas State Press, an African-American newspaper and helped counsel the “Little Rock Nine,” a group of students who braved threats and insults to integrate Central High School in 1957.

They also collaborated on the “From Sea to Shining Sea” series, which focused on the unique history and geography of many states, including famous individuals, current developments and future trends.

Judy Fradin, a native of Chicago, earned her bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University and her master’s degree from Northeastern Illinois University. She is a former high school English and history teacher.

OU-C faculty member Greg Obi presents at international conference on tourism opportunity


By public relations student writer Leah Sternberger

Greg-Victor Chidi Obi, Assistant Professor of Business Management Technology at Ohio University-Chillicothe, recently presented a research paper at the International Academy of Business and Public administration Disciplines (IABPAD) summer conference in Vancouver, Canada.

Obi co-wrote the paper, entitled “International Tourism in The Gold Coast: A Vector Error Correction Study,” with his brother Pat Obi, professor of finance and director of the executive MBA program at Purdue University Calumet.

The IABPAD aims to bring together worldwide researchers and professionals through academic conferences for global scholars. The brothers’ work is also in review for possible publication with the International Journal of Tourism Research.

The study investigated the economic impact of tourism and currency valuation in the West African country of Ghana, formerly known as the Gold Coast. Ghana relies heavily on imports, as do most developing countries in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The import price inflation brought forth by the recent decline in the value of its national currency has significantly raised the cost of living for many of its citizens. With limited manufactured goods to export, the country is unable to take advantage of its weak currency to boost exports.

Obi’s presentation suggested the decline of the country’s currency presents an opportunity to develop a vibrant tourism industry. The economic situation is especially ideal for visitors seeking to stretch their tourism budget. The goal is also supported by Ghana’s tranquil political climate and rich cultural heritage. The study provided some support for this tourism-led growth hypothesis using a vector error correction model. The model predicts how certain variables cause outcomes in other variables with high reliability.

Obi, who teaches several business and economics courses in OU-C’s Business Management Technology (BMT) program, joined the school’s faculty this fall. He has been an adjunct faculty member in the College of Business at Purdue University Calumet and with the Ivy Tech College School of Business in Indiana since 2008. He has also been on the faculty of the Indiana Institute of Technology and a graduate aide/research assistant with the Purdue University School of Management.

Obi emphasizes a global perspective in his courses to better prepare students for a career in the rapidly changing and expanding business management field.

“Especially in today's increasingly interconnected global economy, providing my students with OU-C's mandate of the ‘best transforming learning experience in the country’ requires a global perspective and mindset,” said Obi.

“My role as a teacher is to equip my students with the knowledge and tools that would enable them perform better at their current jobs and grow in their organizational hierarchy, as well as help them find better jobs when they graduate from the BMT program.”

Obi frequently draws from his personal experience to help students understand concepts and theories through real examples.

“I often cite my life and professional experiences in Nigeria, where I was born; my brief stays in various European countries; and my life here in the United States. I also draw from my international consulting knowledge, and often introduce educational documentaries that are focused on the global economy,” Obi said.

“My hope is to work with my colleagues to graduate students who will not just make our local community and state greater, but to develop the next generations of leaders poised to take advantage of tomorrow's even more interconnected global society.”

Nominations sought for OU-C service awards to recognize current and former students making an impact

Heritage Day celebrates OU-C's community connections.

Chillicothe Campus students have a legacy of making a difference.

In that spirit, the third annual service awards will be presented to current and former students who are making a special impact globally or in their communities when Ohio University-Chillicothe commemorates Heritage Day beginning at 6 p.m. on Nov. 19 in the Stevenson Center Learning Commons.

These awards capture the spirit of Heritage Day and the Chillicothe Campus’ mission of engaging with its region and preparing students for lives of impact. Members of the campus and community are encouraged to nominate possible recipients.

These awards include:

STUDENT COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARDS

These awards recognize current students (either individuals or groups) who are actively involved in efforts such as community outreach, volunteer activities and/or philanthropy efforts, either formally or informally.

RECENT ALUMNI SERVICE AWARDS

These awards are designed to recognize individuals who have attended OU-C within the last five years and who have demonstrated outstanding service to their local communities or the global community through efforts such as volunteer activities, participation/leadership in civic organizations, philanthropy, engagement with OU-C and other service projects, either formally or informally.

Nominations are sought from OU-C students, faculty and staff members as well as OU-C alumni and community members.

To nominate a possible recipient, submit a nomination letter of 200 words or fewer by 5 p.m. on Oct. 30 to Kim McKimmy at kellyk@ohio.edu and/or Jack Jeffery at jefferyj@ohio.edu and include ‘Service Award Nomination’ in the subject line. Letters should clearly describe the service activities the nominee has engaged in that warrant consideration for an award. Nominators should also indicate which award the nomination is for as well as their contact information and that of those individuals being nominated. A committee will determine and notify the recipients.

Recipients will receive a certificate and will be recognized at the Heritage Day event. It is anticipated that recipients will represent a range of academic, professional and civic pursuits.

More details about the Heritage Day events will be forthcoming. The occasion is intended to serve as a homecoming-style event on a commuter campus and connect with community members, many of whom are former students. The event is free, and members of the campus and area community are invited to attend. The occasion will include refreshments and entertainment.

Donations being sought for silent auction to combat domestic violence in the region


A silent auction will be held from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Oct. 29 in Ohio University-Chillicothe’s Bennett Hall Patricia Scott Art Gallery to raise funds for the Ross County Coalition against Domestic Violence. This is the third annual silent auction, and all funds support the coalition’s shelter and related programs.

Donations of food, handmade items and items from area businesses are needed for the event. It is requested that items are dropped off by 8 a.m. on Oct. 29 and that photos are provided of items that need to be refrigerated. The two previous silent auctions have been very successful, raising around $1,000 annually for the shelter.

As an extra feature this year, individuals can also donate toiletries, weather gear (hats, gloves, raincoats, umbrellas) and gently used shoes and boots for use at the shelter. Any surplus items that not needed will be given to area agencies.

Those who wish to donate items or otherwise assist with event should contact OU-C Associate Dean Brenda Phillips at (740) 774-7207 or phillib5@ohio.edu.

The silent auction underscores OU-C’s commitment to the community it serves and provides an opportunity for campus and community members to support those in the area who are at risk for violence. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

The Ross County Coalition against Domestic Violence provides advocacy, crisis intervention, case management, referrals and protective order assistance. Its efforts assist women, children and men at risk for interpersonal violence.

Upcoming session to address emotional intelligence strategies to help people jump-start their lives and careers


A session to help people understand how to unlock their emotional intelligence will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Nov. 13 at the Ohio University-Chillicothe Technology and Business Development Center. The focus of the session is “Do you have what it takes to jump-start your brain for business and personal success?”

Marcia Harris will help participants understand how to develop a strategy to get off of the emotional roller coaster and jump-start their lives and careers as well as make an impact on others.

Cost is $149, with an early-bird special of $100 for those who register by Oct. 29. Registration deadline is Nov. 6.

The session is sponsored by the OU-C Office of Continuing Education and Workshop Development. Registration for the non-credit course is available online at www.ohio.edu/chillicothe/community/index.cfm or by contacting Janet Fink at (740) 774-7226 or finkj@ohio.edu.

According to Harris, “Your success in life depends largely on your emotional intelligence. How you respond to life’s situations determines how far you will go in life as you use your positive emotions to diffuse, understand and create working relationships that lead to win-win situations for all involved.”

“This upcoming session focuses on a whole brain strategy, leading to increased energy as you learn to understand your greatest resource, the brain.”