Monday, November 22, 2010
Thanksgiving a time to show compassion for those who seek the American Dream
A message from college president Robert L. Head, Ph.D.
Dear students, faculty and staff:
I was invited to serve as the keynote speaker for the annual Interfaith Community Thanksgiving Service held in Fisher Chapel yesterday. The event has a long history and is sponsored and organized by the Interfaith Council, comprised of representatives from various faith-based organizations throughout Rockford. The purpose of the annual gathering is to celebrate diversity in all aspects, including religion within our community, and to encourage unity. The theme of the celebration was "Rockford’s Diversity – A Reason to be Thankful.”
As I gave thought to my remarks for the Interfaith event, I was keenly aware of the rising debate on the proposed Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act, commonly known as the DREAM Act. The bill establishing the DREAM Act was sponsored in March of 2009 by Senator Dick Durbin. It seeks to provide a pathway for children who were brought to this country at a young age and have been raised here. The intent of the bill is to make higher education available to the 65,000 undocumented students who graduate from our nation’s high schools each year and to provide avenues for them to serve in the military and work. The higher education language would allow the targeted students to receive in-state tuition rates at public schools throughout the country. Currently, Illinois is one of only 10 states to allow this.
Over the past 18 months, the Act has been hotly debated and become the center of political controversy. Those in favor of the bill point out the economic and social benefits of helping children who might otherwise be destined to a life of poverty without hope. Those opposed to the Act generally view it as a back door to amnesty and disconnected from what should be a more comprehensive immigration strategy.
The DREAM Act was procedurally defeated last month after failing to garner enough votes to allow a debate on the Senate floor. Nevertheless, it has been re-introduced and will be considered during the current and expiring 111th Congress, and before those legislators who were elected earlier this month take office.
Regardless as to the outcome, my hope is that our national leaders are as committed to finding ways to positively work together as were those in Fisher Chapel yesterday. We are a better society when we can have civil discourse on topics in which we disagree and can affirm, through our actions, those values that we all hold in common.
Have an enjoyable Thanksgiving break!
Robert L. Head, Ph.D.
Education students reach out to kids at Rochelle school
Students in the EDUC 303/503 class taught by Prof. Kimberlee Wagner have been involved in an exciting activity that extends beyond their classroom all the way to Rochelle. Students have been pen pals with a fourth grade classroom in Rochelle for a couple of months now. The purpose of the project is to expose the college students to some ongoing writing with real classrooms, so the two classes have been reading the same book and writing to each other about it. It has been a great activity for both classes. The younger kids get a chance to talk to someone about the connections they made with the book, and the college students get the chance to see a little bit into the minds of fourth graders and how they think about and relate to stories.
On December 1, the class will be traveling to Rochelle to meet their pen pals. It should be an interesting time!
RC registrar to receive honorary fellowship in London
Anna Jattkowski-Hudson, registrar, is receiving a prestigious fellowship on December 8 at the Presentation Day ceremony being held at Old Royal Naval Chapel in Greenwich, London.
The honorary fellowship is from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance and the award is a HonFTL (Honorary Fellowship of Trinity Laban). Anna worked at the college prior to coming to Rockford College in 2008. Honorary awards are intended to honor persons who have rendered appreciable public service to the nation, the community, the music/dance industry or the arts and for outstanding contribution to the institution. Congratulations, Anna!
Rockford College blog in RRS
Check the Rockford Register Star website, www.rrstar.com. regularly for the new college blog touching on the people, community-focused activities and accomplishments at Rockford College. For the next few months, the blogs will focus on our new college initiative called "Half the Sky.” The current one is written by Jim Keeling, a civic leader and college trustee who is helping with the effort along with his wife, Pam. See the blog here.
Psych students present at conference in Dubuque
Five RC psychology students presented research posters at the 20th Annual TriState Undergraduate Psychology Conference, hosted by Loras College in Dubuque. The students and titles of their presentations appear below:
· A Criterion-Based Analysis of the Traits of Exemplars of Gardner’s Naturalist Intelligence: Temple Grandin, Carl Jung, Charles Darwin, Jane Goodall, and John James Audubon by Kimberly Greyson-Bost
· Credit Card Priming by Julia Lipowski
· Music and Memory by Jessie Norman
· Students’ Self-Esteem Scores and Levels of Self-Awareness by Marissa Stansell
· The Influence of Involvement in Co-curricular Activities on Academic Self-Efficacy by Jessica Williams
The students were accompanied by Prof. Joel Lynch.
Seeing a play in Spanish by RC students? Si!
Does visiting a Chilean beach in December sound like fun? If so, "El Delantal Blanco” ("The White Apron”) is the play for you! Presented in Spanish by the students of Rockford College, the play has multiple ties to current issues of social class and prejudice. "La Señora” a high-class woman who is relaxing on the beach with her maid and son decides to try trading places with her servant. Little did she know this trip to the beach would become such a learning experience. See it December 3, 6 p.m. in the Scarborough auditorium. Admission is free.
RC professor/authors to sign their new book at Barnes & Noble
If you haven’t picked up the book "We Are a College At War: Women Working for Victory in WWII,” here’s your chance to pick it up and have it signed by the authors. Professors Mary Weaks-Baxter, English and Christine Bruun, emerita professor of psychology, will be at Barnes & Noble at Cherryvale Mall, December 4 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. A third author, Prof. Catherine Forslund, history, cannot attend the event but will be at the bookstore earlier to sign copies of the book. We’ll give you an update next week. The book-signing will be done in conjunction with Womanspace, a local nonprofit that will benefit from a portion of book sales on December 4.
RC rocks with knowledge!
The marketing department is running a campaign to remind the campus community and the public just how much Rockford College "Rocks.” We are all doing amazing work and the stories should be shared! Each week, look forward to a new letter of "R.O.C.K.S.” as it will represent an area in which we excel. Find out more at www.rockford.edu/?RCRocks. Should you have submissions, please contact Cassie Swanson at firstname.lastname@example.org. Here is this week's story:
Looking to pursue advanced-level business courses, but not necessarily interested in receiving your MBA? RC has a program for you! The Graduate Certificate program offers a 5-course business series for professionals designed to strengthen business skills. Should you decide to continue on to your MBA, you can, and your credits will apply to your MBA. Learn more at www.rockford.edu/?MBAGradCert.
Stop by to listen to senior seminar presentations
Education students will present their senior seminar presentations tomorrow (Tuesday). All will be held in Starr 130 and are open to the college community. Here are the presenters and their topics:
9 a.m. Tina Kitts
Topic: Advanced Placement Classes: Beneficial College Success?
9:30 a.m. Michelle Long
Topic: Do School Start Times Determine Students' Academic Success?
10 a.m. Holly Penney
Topic: Is the D.A.R.E. program effective?
10:30 a.m. Todd Hall
Topic: Is Homework Academically Beneficial for Students?
11 a.m. Lisa Maryott
Topic: Should Parents Choose Their Child's Teacher?
Make a child’s holiday; donate to Giving Tree
Time is flying by and Christmas is just around the corner. Meantime, 82 children are still waiting for you to choose them for the Giving Tree, an annual event to collect gifts for area children whose families cannot afford to give them gifts. Stop by The Giving Tree in the Starr Science lobby and choose a name today! Let’s clear the tree before Thanksgiving!
International students take in peace plaza
More than a dozen international students and student government officers attended a tour of the Keeling-Puri Peace plaza last Friday. The plaza is a symbol of peace and understanding among nations. It is customary for international visitors to see the plaza while they are in Rockford. They were guests of Jim & Pam Keeling, two local civic leaders.
CAN-struction winners announced
Congratulations to everyone who took part in CANstruction this year. Almost 1,000 canned goods were donated for the needy. Winners included:
1st Place - Rotaract Club’s Turkey
2nd Place – Embrace Club’s Love and Equality
3rd Place – Multi Cultural, French, and Spanish Clubs’ Coliseum
Tie for 5th Place – Feminist Club’s Female Symbol and Athletics Trophy
6th Place – Dayton and Lathrop Hall’s Christmas Tree
Kudos to the Kobe-Regents Center for Global Education for the many events they organized for International Education Week, November 15-19!
Out and about
Events that may be of interest to the Rockford College community and their families this week.
Third annual Thanksgiving Concert on Wednesday. Doors open at 7 p.m., show starts at 8 p.m. The Sullivan Center, 118 N. Main St., Rockford. The concert will feature Miles Nielsen and Ernie Hendrickson and special guests. Tickets are $15. Advance tickets are available at the Rockford Area Arts Council, both Postal Shoppe locations and Just Goods, all in Rockford; and Nikki’s Cafe in Beloit, Wis. 815-964-2238; www.charlotteswebofrockford.org.
Rockford Dance Company and Rockford Symphony Orchestra’s "The Nutcracker,” on Saturday 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Coronado Performing Arts Center. Young Clara goes on a wondrous journey with her Nutcracker Prince to the land of the Sugar Plum Fairy. Cost is $19 to $56, $12 for 12 and younger. 815-965-0049; www.rockfordsymphony.com.
Rockford’s Holiday Tree Lighting, Sunday, 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., Sinnissippi Park. The lighting includes treats, music and a visit from Santa Claus. From 4 p.m. to 5 p.m., Kantorei, The Singing Boys of Rockford will perform. And from 4 p.m. to 5:15 p.m., there will be family activities, such as a reindeer chow station and a Santa sock toss game. The tree lighting is at 5:30 p.m.
RC in the news
· Jim and Pam Keeling, who have been active with our "Half the Sky” initiative, were featured last Tuesday in the Register Star.
· The Can-struction judging November 12 was covered by Channel 13.
· On-site admission of students at the ACE High School in Rockford was covered by both Channels 13 and 17 last Tuesday.
· A presentation by World Bicycle Relief in the Lion’s Den last Thursday was covered by Channel 13.
· Jeff Fahrenwald, MBA program, was shown on Channel 17 last week reading to grade school kids as part of a program sponsored by the Golden Apple Foundation.
· Cassie Swanson, marketing, was pictured and several others with Rockford College connections were featured in a Register Star profile on their band, Rock Town Strangers.