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Weekly Update

Monday, November 02, 2009  
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We’re moving forward with sustainability programs

A message from Robert L. Head, Ph.D., President

Dear students, faculty and staff:

One phenomenon quickly crossing the landscape of higher education is the sustainability movement. Many colleges and universities have aggressively incorporated elements of environmental sustainability for the purpose of lessening our carbon footprint. This movement has not been without its critics. One such critic is the National Association of Scholars, which in September identified several concerns with the movement. One concern is that sustainability programs within the academy can be coercive, moving away from the environment and toward political ideology. We are all aware of successful sustainability programs and, unfortunately, those that were designed for other aims. I am fully supportive of sustainability programs that are committed to benefit our planet and to contribute to our economic well-being.

Several months ago, Governor Quinn launched an effort to have every college and university committed to sustainability. He introduced the Illinois Sustainable University Compact with the hope of “implementing a green way of thinking and acting to reduce our carbon footprint.” The details of the compact include 12 initiatives, 11 of which are clearly directed to environmental sustainability and one (increasing the percentage of food purchased for our dining facilities from local farmers and vendors) that is focused on economic sustainability. The compact does not require that institutions accomplish all 12 initiatives. It does seek to have each institution take on at least three of the 12 each year. Given the appropriateness and specific scope of the compact, I have agreed to join the vast majority of Illinois college and university presidents and commit to the Governor’s initiative.

Last week, during my periodic Student Roundtable, I asked the students present about their thoughts on the sustainability movement. What I received in return was great enthusiasm and a number of ideas that could shape an agenda for Rockford College. Additionally, I learned that at the most recent Student Government meeting, student leaders decided to make sustainability their focus for the spring semester. In reviewing the options under the compact, we have selected four initiatives to begin with. Others will be added as students, faculty and staff become further engaged. The four initiatives are:

Join the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR Challenge to increase energy efficiency on campus;
  • Complete at least one stormwater management project;
  • Increase the amount of overall waste recycled on campus by at least 15 percent; and
  • Purchase non-toxic cleaning products whenever practical.

Have a great week!

Robert L. Head, Ph.D.


Recap of Unlearn Racism Week
More than 200 people took part in the “National Conversation on Race” workshop here Friday facilitated by diversity expert Lee Mun Wah. The event capped off a week of diversity activities at the college marking “Unlearn Racism Week.” Congratulations to Michelle Griggs and the Kobe Regent’s Center for Global Education for coordinating this important event.  

RC psych students present at conference
Students Nathaniel Branch and Kimberly Greyson-Bost presented research at the Tri-State Undergraduate Psychology Conference at Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill. Saturday. Title of Branch’s research was: “Who helps more?  The effect of self-esteem on altruism.”  Greyson-Bost’s research was titled:  “Influence of gender on reports of perceived stress and internal locus of control after computer game format of biofeedback.” Congratulations to both students for presenting this research. Their instructor is Joel Lynch.

Volunteer to adopt a classroom

Join Residence Life on Wednesday (Nov. 4) to “Adopt a Classroom.” Volunteers will be painting Scarborough 201 from 4 p.m. -7 p.m. Sign-up to volunteer from 11 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. in Burpee today and tomorrow.

We’re listed in prestigious magazine
Entrepreneur magazine is a leading monthly in the field, and each year they have a feature on top colleges for entrepreneurship, along with a list of other colleges that offer entrepreneurship programs. This year, for the first time, RC is listed in the “other colleges” category, a real feather in our cap.  Here is the Web link for the page on their Web site on which RC appears: And here is the separate RC page on their site:

Pop culture discussion this afternoon
Join professors Michael Perry, English; Shawn Klein, philosophy; and Matthew Flamm, philosophy, for a discussion on the use of pop culture within academia and higher education: "Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Stephen King, Harry Potter, & the Wizard of Oz: I can really talk about this stuff at college?"  It’s today from 4 p.m. – 5 p.m. in the Burpee Center Grace Roper Lounge. All who are interested are welcome to attend. Snacks will be provided, courtesy of the Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship.

English students will present findings from summer research 
The English Department congratulates three outstanding majors, seniors Michelle Craglow, Jennifer Eller, and Ed Phebus, whose panel submission, “Experiencing Year Zero," was accepted by the Streamlines Undergraduate Languages and Literature Conference, to be held on November 14 at Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa.  The panel submission developed from the students' summer research in New Orleans, La. This research opportunity was offered in conjunction with the 2008-09 English seminars in literature, taught by Dr. Michael Perry and Dr. Mary Weaks-Baxter, and generously funded by student faculty summer research grants. 

Ashley Geiger is September’s Employee of the Month
Congratulations to Ashley Geiger, athletic trainer, for being named Employee of the Month for September.  Geiger says the best part of her job is seeing an athlete from initial injury to being able to compete without restrictions at a high level. One colleague says about her: “Ashley does a great job dealing with many sports and giving equal attention to our student athletes.” Congratulations, Ashley Geiger!

Where’s Robert?
Each week, we list noteworthy meetings on President Head’s calendar. Here’s what’s on the docket for this week. 
  • November 3       Meeting with Mayor Morrissey
  • November 5       Community Leaders Forum, Keith Country Day School
  • November 5       Higher Education Alliance for the Rock River Region                              (HEARRR) meeting at Rock Valley College  
  • November 7       Northern Illinois Center for Non-profit Excellence (NICNE) Non-                        profit Dialog Panel
  • November 8       Community Leaders meeting with Governor Quinn, Rockford

Gleicher represents RC at honor society conference
Professor Jules Gleicher, chairman of the Department of Political Science, director of the college's Honors Program in the Liberal Arts, and secretary/treasurer of its chapter of Phi Beta Kappa (Eta of Illinois), attended the Phi Beta Kappa Society's 42nd Triennial Council meeting in Austin, Texas last month.

Get to Know Me: Michelle Borgialli

Periodically, we feature new RC employees so the campus community can get to know them a little better. This week, we introduce you to Michelle Borgialli.

Name:  Michelle Borgialli

Job title:  Coordinator of Alumni Affairs

Family:  daughter, 4 yrs. old

Professional/educational background:
B.S. Management Studies, Rockford College

Currently working on MBA at RC

Work experience includes closing manager for Vision Mortgage Group, Rockford and closing agent for Weston County Title, Newcastle, Wyo. I was also manager of O’Leary’s Pub/Stash O’Neil’s in Rockford.

Interesting fact about me:
I’ve lived in seven states and nine cities, some of them twice, and one of them three times (Rockford), but I’m here to stay now. 

The favorite thing about my job is…

Being able to reach out to alumni and get them excited or reconnected with the college. I love meeting people and planning events.

Reading, art, music, movies, spending time with family and friends.

Take a trip to Hull-House

Learn more about our distinguished alumna Jane Addams with a trip to Hull-House in Chicago November 10. The Jane Addams Center for Civic Engagement is sponsoring this trip, which will also include a trip to either the Adler Planetarium or the Art Museum. Tickets are free and lunch will be provided. Interested? Call JACCE at 815-394-5143. But hurry…space is limited.

Want to do something different for spring break?
Here’s an idea for those who want a different spring break experience. Consider the Alan Hutchcroft Alternative Spring Break, March 6 – 13, 2010! Every March, RC students travel to Starkville, Miss., to spend their spring break participating in Habitat for Humanity’s Collegiate Challenge. This spring, Rockford College students, alumni, faculty, and staff continue the tradition of engaging in service in the community of Starkville by building a house for a family currently living in sub-standard housing. This spring’s trip is scheduled for Saturday, March 6 through Saturday, March 13. Want to know more? Information sessions are set for November 4, 9, and 10 from 5:15 p.m. – 5:45 p.m. in the Kent Center.
For more information, contact Robin Kenney, AHSB coordinator at 815-226-4168.  

Submissions due for literary magazine
The submission deadline for this semester's edition of Black Hole, White Light, RC’s literary magazine, is approaching quickly.  Tomorrow (November 3) is the last day for submissions. Please send all your artwork, poetry, and prose to the Literary Club to be considered for publication this semester.

One-act plays to be performed in Cheek Theatre
A couple of one-act plays will be performed by the college’s Three Penny acting troupe in the college’s Cheek Theatre November 7, 7 p.m. and November 8, 6 p.m. Students will perform “Lone Star” and “Laundry and Bourbon,” a southern duet of one-act plays by James McClure.  Admission is three cents or donation. For more information, call the Rockford College Box office, 815-226-4100.

RC in the news
Did you happen to catch the following in the news during the past week?
  • Coverage of L.A. Malone’s talk (Unlearn Racism Week) at RC last Monday on Channels 13 and 17. Channel 23 also covered RC working with students at Auburn’s freshman campus on an anti-racism activity Wednesday. The media also gave extensive coverage to the “National Conversation on Race” in Regents Hall with Lee Mun Wah on Friday. 
  • English professor Michael Perry was live on Channel 13’s noon show Thursday offering tips on scary Halloween movies to see.
  • Elizabeth Drog, performing arts, was quoted in the Rockford Register Star Thursday about haunted sightings in the Maddox Theatre.
  • Coverage of Elaine Sharpe, psychology/campus minister, joining St. James Middle School kids on their lobbying trip to Springfield. Sharpe’s adolescent psychology class is partnering with St. James kids on the project.  A story appeared on Channel 17 last Thursday. 
  • Channel 13 covered Psych Society students hosting a Halloween party for the homeless at Jubilee Center last Thursday.
  • Prof. Matt Flamm, philosophy, was featured in a Register Star “Get to Know Me” today.  Check it out here

The Weekly will provide links to stories when they are posted on the Web.

Community Search
Calendar of Events

Student Music Recital

EDP: Seminar #6 - Conflict Management and Resolution

NICNE Customer Service Workshop

FORUM: Sports Management Symposium

Songs & Sonnets: A Renaissance Christmas

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