Feb. 19, 2002
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NMU President Addresses Budget Outlook

President Judi Bailey told faculty and staff attending three budget forums last week that no current NMU employees are expected to be laid off for the 2002-03 school year. She also said the university plans to honor union contracts for wage increases and will make no major changes to health care benefits.

“Our goal is not to lay off current employees,” said Bailey. “We will, however, reduce the total number of positions on campus. Because of that, we will have to work cooperatively and creatively to do more with less people in the upcoming year.”

Bailey challenged the NMU faculty and staff to “find ways to work differently – by streamlining, automating, and in some cases, eliminating tasks.” She said ideas for change should be brought to one’s direct supervisor, department head or division leader, or sent via e-mail to ideas@nmu.edu.

One area that will need change in the future, according to Bailey, is health care benefits. Over the past five years, Northern’s health care costs rose 42 percent. She said more than half of the increase can be attributed to a 130 percent jump in the cost of prescription drugs. “We will start the discussion with the university’s wellness committee on what health care benefits changes we can make,” Bailey said. “We will then take the committee’s recommendations before all employee groups before making any final decisions.”

Bailey also said that tuition and fees for fall 2002 have not yet been determined, but enrollment projections for next semester should be “clear enough” for the administration to bring a recommendation to the Board of Trustees at its May 3 meeting.

“Some faculty and staff wondered why I didn’t wait to hold the forums until we could talk about the decisions on tuition and fees, the actual amount of reallocation needed to make up the funding shortfall, and what budget reallocation recommendations would be implemented,” said Bailey. “But there have been so many questions and rumors racing about campus and in the community about layoffs and health care issues that I wanted to get the word out, so employees wouldn’t have to worry about their family situation for next year needlessly.

“I also wanted every NMU faculty and staff member to have the same information I have at this point because they get as many questions – maybe more – from students, parents and community members and I want all employees to feel comfortable discussing the budget situation with our constituents.”

The next university budget forum is at 3 p.m. March 14, in the University Center. It will focus on enrollment projections and provide an overview of budget reallocation decisions.

Ahn Trio at Kaufman Saturday

The Ahn sisters, originally from South Korea and trained at Juilliard, will bring their unique style of chamber music to Marquette. They are scheduled to perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Kaufman Auditorium.

The trio tours the world and gives more than 100 concerts annually in such venues as the Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Singapore and Moscow. According to a review in The Washington Post, "Their technique was impressive, and they balanced unanimity and individuality in a spirit that is at the heart of chamber music."

Advance tickets are available at all NMU outlets for $13 for NMU faculty and staff; the price at the door is $2 more.

Concert Band to Perform Student Work

Northern’s concert band will perform an original student composition among other selections at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27, at Peterson Auditorium in Ishpeming. Stephen Grugin (Music) is the band director. No admission will be charged.

Brandon Nelson, an NMU sophomore from Ishpeming, wrote Enduring Freedom in response to President George W. Bush’s address to the nation following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The band played another Nelson composition, An Old Sailor’s Tune, at a previous concert.

Other pieces scheduled for the concert include Flag of Stars: A Salute to America, a symphonic overture by Gordon Jacob; Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral from Lohengrin; Rikudim: Four Israeli Folk Dances for Band by composer Jan Van deer Roost of the Netherlands; and The Glory of the Yankee Navy by John Philip Sousa.

The program will also include The Lord of the Rings by Johan de Meij, a symphony piece based on the trilogy of that name by British writer J.R.R. Tolkien. The piece was composed in 1987, 15 years before the release of the now popular movie.

The concert band will perform a second time this semester on April 24 at Forest Roberts Theatre.

Psychology First with 100 Percent on WebCT

Psychology is the first university department to post 100 percent of its courses on WebCT.

According to Harry Whitaker, department head, the psychology faculty reached this milestone at the start of the winter semester.

"The faculty made a conscious effort to get it done," he added. "They are pleased and find that it works quite well. Everyone is using it actively, as far as I know."

Psychology has about 75 courses on WebCT this semester.

DFA Nominations Due March 1

The deadline for Distinguished Faculty Award nominations is March 1. The awards honor full-time teaching faculty, including academic department heads, who have made significant contributions to NMU and their professional areas.

Any university faculty or staff member, student or community member may submit nominations. Up to three faculty will be selected based on their demonstrated record of achievement in the following areas: teaching or other assigned responsibilities; research, scholarship, creative or other appropriate professional activities; and university or professionally-related community service. The monetary award is $1,000.

To complete an online nomination form, visit Distinguished Faculty Awards. For more information, contact Janis Book (Academic Affairs) at jbook@nmu.edu.

Spare-Time Talents Garner Attention

Bob Hanson (Criminal Justice) has an avid interest in photography. He also has an obvious talent, judging by some of the shots that will be on display in his upcoming Images of Africa exhibit. The show runs throughout March at the Marquette Arts and Culture Center Gallery in the lower level of the Peter White Public Library. A public reception is scheduled from 6-8 p.m. Friday, March 15.

The exhibit includes images of people, wildlife and landscapes. “The theme unites all my experiences there,” Hanson said. “The country is so diverse. Everything I had heard or thought about it was wrong. I tried to offer a glimpse of that diversity and what the country has to offer through my photographs.”

Hanson took most of the photos while on sabbatical from February through March of 2001. He and NMU colleague Linda Zupan also made a previous visit to Technikon South Africa in Johannesburg. NMU and the Technikon have engaged in periodic faculty exchanges with the goal of forming a long-term academic partnership. Some of Hanson’s images can be viewed at Images of Africa.

Francine Malindzak (Plant Operations) wakes up in the wee hours of the morning to report to her job at Olson Library. The tradeoff is that she clocks out at 1:30 p.m., leaving plenty of daylight to pursue her passion of alpine skiing.

As a student at Northern in the early 80s, Malindzak was the university’s first female national champion in her sport. She has retained her competitive spirit, racing in the Marquette Mountain elite adult league on Thursday nights. NASTAR (National Standard Race) results from last season show Malindzak ranked first in the nation among 237 females in the 40-44 age group.

While still able to “light the fire within,” she also turns her attention outward to nurture the skills of young skiers. Malindzak has helped coach the Marquette Mountain race team for six years. “We’ve become a pretty good feeder program for area high schools and the U.S. Ski Association,” she said. “I look at coaching as a good way to give back something that gives me a lot of enjoyment. Skiing is a lifetime sport.”

Watercolor illustrations by Mike McKinney (Plant Operations) are featured on the cover and inside pages of the January/February issue of Michigan History magazine. McKinney supplied the artwork for an article on "The Beaver Island Ice Walkers," who delivered winter mail via dog sled from the mainland to Beaver Island over Lake Michigan. This is McKinney's first cover credit. "I mainly do art on the side--illustrations and portrait work for family and friends," he said.

Roger Rosentreater, managing editor of Michigan History, said the magazine usually relies heavily on photographs “We’ve only used art like this a couple of times on our covers, but Mike does such a wonderful job and we have great confidence in his work,” Rosentreater said. “Mike did the artwork on presidential visits to the Upper Peninsula in our special U.P. issue that came out in the fall and we were so impressed with his work on that story that when the Beaver Island piece came in we immediately thought of Mike’s talent to produce a strong, bold art to go with that story.”

McKinney studied art at NMU and graduated in 1974. "An art career didn't pan out for me right away, so I started working at Northern that same year and I'm still around," he said. "I'm getting close to retirement now, so maybe I have to get some of these other things going."