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Campus News / News

Fall 2016 Forum Series announced

08/17/2016 12:16 pm

Media Contact: Rita Elliott, Director of Communications, 815-226-3374

Rockford, Ill. — The Rockford University fall 2016 Forum Series starts Friday, August 26 with the President’s Opening Convocation. Amongst the highlights of the 11 events are a seminar with the Walter Payton Family, the third annual Rockford City Dance Festival and numerous speakers presenting on a variety of topics including Melissa Fleming, head of communications and chief spokesperson for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. All events are open to the public and, with the exception of theatre events, are offered at no charge. All lectures and performances will take place on the Rockford University campus, 5050 East State Street, Rockford. Tickets are required for all events and can be obtained by contacting the Rockford University Box Office at 815-226-4100 or


Eric Fulcomer

Friday, August 26
12 p.m., Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center

The 2016–2017 Rockford University academic year begins with a traditional convocation and remarks by President Eric W. Fulcomer. The formal opening convocation event has been held annually since 1851. The event includes a faculty procession in full academic regalia.




PicofConnieandJarrettCropped(2)-150x179Rock Solid Success Seminar
The Family of Walter Payton
Thursday, September 8
7 p.m., Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center

The Office of Student Success and Retention presents the annual Rock Solid Success Seminar with the family of NFL Pro Football Hall of Fame member, Walter Payton. Connie and Jarrett Payton will speak about how vision, intense determination, and his “Never Die Easy” motto allowed Walter Payton to gain professional and personal success. The Rock Solid Success Seminar is designed to motivate and encourage all students as they pursue graduation from RU.

‌‌nackenoff1-150x216Jane Addams’ Constitution
Carol Nackenoff, Ph.D.
Constitution Day
Monday, September 12
12 p.m., Fisher Memorial Chapel

Carol Nackenoff is the Richter Professor of Political Science at Swarthmore College, where she teaches constitutional law and American politics. She authored The Fictional Republic, co-edited Jane Addams and the Practice of Democracy, and has written about the pragmatist progressive work of Addams and her Hull House associates.




MelissaFlemingPhoto-150x127How to Help Refugees Rebuild Their World
Melissa Fleming
Wednesday, September 21
7 p.m., Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center 

As Head of Communications and Chief Spokesperson for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Melissa Fleming leads communications efforts around the globe. Operating in 120 countries, UNHCR provides shelter and help for over 30 million people who have fled wars and persecution.

Thursday, October 6 – Sunday, October 9
Thursday – Saturday @ 7:30 p.m.; Sunday @ 2 p.m.
Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center 

On the morning of a Labor Day picnic emotions of joy, hope, longing, jealousy, anticipation, loneliness, love, and lust are ignited amongst the seemingly complacent townsfolk when a handsome drifter arrives in their small Kansas community.

RUDANCE-Mar252015-030-150x71Third Annual Rockford City Dance Festival
Friday, October 14 – Saturday, October 15
7:30 p.m., Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center 

Rockford University students perform under the direction of Assistant Professor of Dance Amy Wright. Guest dance companies will perform selected sets.

Morrison-150x225Using Humor to Maximize Living
Mary Kay Morrison
Wednesday, October 26
7 p.m., Fisher Memorial Chapel 

Mary Kay Morrison, founder and director of Humor Quest, is an educator who has taught at virtually every level of the educational spectrum, facilitating keynote presentations and workshop sessions for the past 30 years. She is president of the AATH (Association of Applied and Therapeutic Humor) and founded the AATH Humor Academy graduate studies program. She is the 2016 AATH Lifetime Achievement award recipient.



William_Strauss-150x210Economic Outlook
William A. Strauss, senior economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
Friday, November 11
12 p.m., Fisher Memorial Chapel 

We are in the eighth year of the economic expansion following the “Great Recession” of 2008 and 2009. Yet what would typically be a robust recovery has not occurred, when we consider labor markets, wage growth, credit conditions, energy prices, and exports. Mr. Strauss will look at the performance of the overall macro economy with specific attention paid to key economic sectors and indicators for the U.S. economy over the next couple of years. “scriptures” as sharp wedge for critical research and theorizing in the politics of language, social formation, consciousness, and orientation.

Lester_Marsha-150x225Climate Change, Chemistry, International Assessment, and Policy
Marsha I. Lester, Ph.D.
Phi Beta Kappa Speaker
Monday, November 14
4 p.m., Fisher Memorial Chapel 

Marsha Lester is the Edmund J. Kahn Distinguished Professor in the department of chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania and editor-in chief of The Journal of Chemical Physics. Her research employs novel spectroscopic methods to rigorously characterize important, yet previously uncharted, regions of chemical reaction pathways, including reaction intermediates of environmental significance.



10500375_10152665403823377_7208674095784181224_n-150x180Freedom Firm: Fighting the Sex Trafficking of Minors
Tuesday, November 29
7 p.m., Fisher Memorial Chapel 

Founded in 2006, Freedom Firm seeks to eliminate child prostitution in India by rescuing minors who have been sold into the commercial sex trade, restoring their identities, and seeking justice against those who perpetrate these crimes. Becky Morris, Midwest Regional Senior Representative at Freedom Firm will talk about the efforts employed by Freedom Firm in the fight to eliminate child prostitution.



ForFlier-150x114Fourth Annual Sport Management Symposium
Thursday, December 1
6-8 p.m., Regents Hall, Burpee Center 

Speakers from various areas in the field of sport and recreation management will be on hand to answer questions pertaining to careers in sport management and to share their tips for success. This event is organized by members of Professor Jason Hunter’s Senior Seminar class. A full list of participants is TBD.