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Weekly Update

Tuesday, March 17, 2009  
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Alumni-advancement activities over Spring Break

While many of our students, faculty, staff and alumni were building homes in Starkville, Miss. as part of the Alan Hutchcroft Alternative Spring Break, other members of the RC family were engaged in “building” of another sort in Florida and Washington, D.C.

President Head and Director of Alumni and Development Bern Sundstedt `77, visited more than 30 alumni and friends in Naples, Ft. Meyers and Sarasota, Fla. from Sunday to Wednesday of last week (March 8-11). They were joined by the Vocal Collective who performed at the alumni gatherings as well as conducting service work at the Plymouth Harbor retirement center in Sarasota and “Give Kids the World,” in Kissimmee. The VC also participated in a voice class at Rollins College during their brief and busy days in Florida.  Perhaps the highlight of the trip, however, was seeing the members of the Collective and our softball team enjoying their time together before and after the double header games in Ft. Meyers.

The Florida trip was a success by all accounts, according to Bern Sundstedt. Following that trip, Dr. Head then traveled to London where he and Executive Vice President and Dean of the College Stephanie Quinn are engaged in discussions with Regent’s College to advance educational opportunities for both colleges. 

At the same time, John McNamara, vice president for college development, traveled to Washington, D.C.  While there, John visited with Sen. Richard Durbin’s staff and Congressman Don Manzullo and his staff; during the week, Congress passed the FY2009 Budget, which included $238,000 for Rockford College for science equipment and classroom technology upgrades as well as the renewal of our participation in the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources (TPS) program.  TPS brings $150,000 to the college and provides an exciting program for our students of education, as well as in-service programs for Rockford area teachers put on by our Education Department.

John managed to have 11 personal meetings with alumni in the DC area by  traveling the Metro line from end to end during his three days in the nation’s capitol.

The Florida and D.C. trips and visits with alumni and friends were a further effort to build relations and resources for our students of today and tomorrow from the alumni who have benefitted from the philanthropy of earlier generations!

One of Golden Apple winners is RC grad
Penny Spears, an RC elementary education graduate and math teacher at Belvidere Central Middle School, was one of five area teachers named Golden Apple recipients last week for outstanding teaching. The program is sponsored by the Golden Apple Foundation, which, coincidentally, is housed at Rockford College in the lower level of the Burpee Center. The college regularly has one or more winners in the competition, which is a real tribute to the teachers and our Education Department. 

Physician featured on 60 Minutes to speak at RC Tuesday
Dr. David Walton, a physician whose work with the people of Haiti has been featured on “60 Minutes” as well as other news shows, will speak on “Medicine and Social Justice” at Rockford College March 17, 4 p.m. in the college’s Maddox Theatre.

Walton is a senior resident of internal medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, and is one of two Global Health Equity residents, spending half his time in Haiti. There, he provides primary health care for HIV prevention and treatment options, tuberculosis treatment, and other illnesses and diseases. 

In addition to the care he provides for Haitians, Walton is active in bringing attention to the travails of the less fortunate in the poverty-stricken nation. 

His talk, part of the Forum Series, is free and open to the public though tickets need to be reserved through the college box office, phone 226-4100.


Expert on John Adams to speak at Rockford College

C. Bradley Thompson, a research professor at Clemson University in South Carolina, will present a lecture at Rockford College March 18, 2 p.m. in Scarborough Room 20 on the political thought of John Adams.

Thompson is the author of the prize-winning book, John Adams and the Spirit of Liberty. He has lectured around the country on education reform and the American Revolution, and his op-ed essays have appeared in scores of newspapers around the country and abroad. 

The talk is sponsored by the college’s Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship. It is free and open to the public.

Music Academy co-sponsors young artists concert Friday
Musicians from Ravinia’s Steans Institute for Young Artists will perform at the Court Street United Methodist Church, 215 N. Court St. March 20 at 7:30 p.m.  The concert is sponsored by The Music Academy of Rockford College and the Mendelssohn Performing Arts Center. 

The young artists in Steans study with internationally-renowned faculty and then perform for audiences around the world.  In this concert, they will perform a specially-commissioned work commemorating the 200th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birth with Rockford College President Robert L. Head reading Lincoln’s words.

There are a limited number of free tickets for faculty and staff.  For tickets and more information, call the Rockford College box office at 226-4100.

Take a tour to Turkey
You won’t actually be going to Turkey, but it’ll feel like it when you attend the global community hour featuring Turkey March 17 from noon – 1 p.m. in the Faculty Dining room, 2nd floor Burpee.  Your tour guides include Filiz Dik, math professor, and Yusuf Sezer, an ESL student here. 

Computer expert to discuss technology, citizenship                                                                  
William A. Wulf, former president of the National Academy of Engineering and assistant director of the National Science Foundation, will talk on “Responsible Citizenship in a Technological Democracy” at Rockford College March 26 at noon in the college’s Maddox Theatre. 

Currently the AT&T Professor of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Virginia, Wulf is active in promoting knowledge of computer and engineering concepts to better understand issues affecting society. He says in spite of the fact the U.S. is so technologically dependent, many citizens do not know enough science and engineering concepts to be informed about such things as energy policy, climate change, electronic voting, and other issues.

Wulf’s talk, part of the college’s Forum Series, is free and open to the public, though tickets are required.  For tickets and other information, contact the college box office at 815-226-4100 or visit them in the Clark Arts Center. 

Later in the day, Wulf will also talk about blending information technology into the humanities in a presentation entitled “Digital Humanities” in the college’s Fisher Chapel at 8 p.m. The presentation, sponsored by the college’s Phi Beta Kappa chapter, is free and open to the public.  


Tribute planned for retiring NIU art prof
“Under His Guidance: Mazanowski’s MFA’s,” an exhibition featuring the work of retiring NIU art professor Ron Mazanowski and a generation of the students he mentored will be held at the Rockford College Art Gallery from March 20 – April 17.  

A reception for Mazanowski is slated for March 20, 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. in the college art gallery following a lecture by the retiring professor from 6 p.m. – 7 p.m. in the Starr Science Building Room 207 on campus.  

For more information, call the Rockford College box office at 815-226-4100.

Next Student Success Series topic: Positioning yourself for success
Did midterms sneak up on you?  Are you not where you thought you’d be with your classes?  Join us for “Sink or Swim: How to Turn the Titanic Around” March 18, 4 p.m. – 5 p.m. in the Faculty Dining Room, 2nd floor Burpee. This interactive session will help you identify current study methods and various resources on campus to help you re-commit to academic excellence.  Topics to be covered include:  study skills, note taking, and time management.

Feel creative? Literary magazine is seeking submissions
The Rockford College literary magazine is still actively seeking submissions for this semester's edition of Black Hole, White Light.  The deadline has been set for this Fri., March 20. All students and interested faculty and staff members are invited to submit as it is a great way to showcase your talent in the written word and/or visual arts.  All submissions can be e-mailed to  Any questions? Please contact Ed Phebus at


New Training Tab available for faculty and staff in the portal
Interested in upcoming training on computers? Check out the training tab on the college portal,  This list of helpful and informative training topics will be updated regularly so take a look! 

Biology prof is now a volunteer firefighter
Dr. Duane Kitchen, associate professor of biology, reports that on March 9, he had the honor of being sworn in as a volunteer firefighter for the Cherry Valley Fire Protection District.  He has been participating in the district's basic recruit training program since September 2008, and completed the program during the previous week. Kitchen will serve for at least one year as a probationary firefighter, and will be on call for response during overnight hours on a minimum of at least four nights per month. CVFPD personnel respond to all types of emergencies including medical calls, fires, vehicle accidents, water rescues and natural disasters. 

New job postings listed
There are currently three new positions posted on the Rockford College Web site.  Qualified internal candidates and qualified students are encouraged to apply.  Also, some of our best employees are referrals from our current employees! See the Web site for more details, You will be required to search for openings.  Please select “Staff” as your search category to read about the two Residence Hall Director openings and the Campus Scheduling Coordinator opening.

They helped fight hunger
Thank you to everyone who helped pack meals for Kids Against Hunger at the Non-profit organization, Kids Around the World. A big thanks to Heartland Church for inviting the Rockford College community to help this great cause. In a little over an hour volunteers made enough meals to feed 5,184 kids for a day! If you would like to know more or would like to help this wonderful cause please e-mail Jonica Trude at or stop by  the Jane Addams Center for Civic Engagement (2nd floor of Nelson).

Job changes and promotions
Congratulations to the following on their new assignments at the college: 


·       GA Erin Alden and GA Ben Albury have been promoted to staff positions in admission and athletics respectively.

·       Emily Horst went from part-time to full-time status in the EAB division.

·       Sandy Riley is the new associate director for the BSMS program.

Community Search
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Student Music Recital

EDP: Seminar #6 - Conflict Management and Resolution

NICNE Customer Service Workshop

FORUM: Sports Management Symposium

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