Wednesday, January 14, 2004

NMU to Acquire Wright Street Property


The NMU Board of Trustees last month approved the purchase of property and structures located at 1010 and 1020 Wright Street – adjacent to Ripley Heating Plant – at a cost of $725,000 plus related miscellaneous expenses.


The amount will be funded through the transfer of Magers Hall, a state building, to the Housing and Residence Life auxiliary operation for the purposes of converting it back to its original use as a residence hall.


“Northern has been interested in this land for some time because it is part of the university’s long-range master plan,” said Carl Pace (Facilities and Services). “We began exploring a purchase several years ago, when it became apparent that we would have to begin the process of replacing our boilers within the heating plant and electrical gear, which may require additional space." Full Story

Universities Explore Ways to Use Purchase Power to Cut Costs


The state of Michigan is partnering with public universities to explore joint purchasing opportunities that may help reduce rates for products and services. The idea that pooled buying power can drive down costs is certainly not unique or new. However, Michigan’s economic woes and related decreases in state support for universities combined with skyrocketing increases in costs related to such things as health care and utilities have prompted schools to be more aggressive in their search for savings.


Gavin Leach (Finance and Planning) said an existing example of the joint purchase advantage relates to Internet service. For several years, all 15 public universities have managed and run their Internet services through the statewide Merit system.


“Obviously, if you have 15 institutions that need the same thing, they will be able to negotiate a lower price for the product or service by pursuing it in a cooperative manner,” he said.


The same logic is being applied to a recent effort in which universities have issued a request for proposals to utility companies, asking them to submit bids for providing natural gas to the group. Full Story

Employee Relief Fund Update

The Employee Emergency Relief Fund, originally established for those impacted by the 2004-04 budget reductions, will also be available to those displaced as a result of the latest round of budget adjustments announced in December. It is intended to help individuals overcome severe hardship they may encounter as they transition to new careers.

A disbursement committee composed of representatives from each employee group – union and non-union – was formed to review applications.

Individuals who will be displaced through position eliminations or bumping procedures may qualify for assistance, provided they have not retired or obtained full-time employment at the time of the application.

Martha Van Der Kamp (Development and Alumni Relations) is co-chair of the committee. She said contributions to the fund are still being accepted. Employees who would like to assist with the effort can contribute via payroll deduction, or by sending a personal check designated for this purpose through campus mail.

A joint adjustment committee composed of representatives from NMU, Michigan Works! and the State of Michigan Office of Career Development will sponsor a workshop for displaced employees on Monday, Feb. 23. Details will be announced in a future issue of CAMPUS.

'Dream Alive' Begins Jan. 20

NMU will honor the life of Martin Luther King Jr. during a “Dream Alive” celebration. A highlight will be the “Dream Alive” program featuring Joe Rogers, the former lieutenant governor of Colorado. It is scheduled at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 20, in the Marquette, Nicolet and Cadillac Rooms of the University Center. The public is invited to attend free of charge.

Rogers' program will feature live commentary that will take audience members back in time to the renowned 1963 March On Washington where King delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech, up to his final words, delivered in 1968 in Memphis, Tenn. The director of Black Student Services at Colorado State University described his presentation as “ … uncanny, electrifying, spellbinding, awesome and touching – like King was in the room … ”

Rogers served as America ’s youngest lieutenant governor and was only the fourth African American in U.S. history to be elected as a state’s number two chief executive. Now a practicing attorney in Colorado , Rogers received the 2001 Trumpet Award from Time Warner’s Turner Broadcasting System. It is one of the nation’s highest honors for African American achievement.

For complete activities, go to Full Story.

Coletta to Discuss Creative Cities at NMU

Students, faculty and staff are invited to participate in an interactive discussion with Carol Coletta, president of Coletta & Company. She has been pioneering innovative strategies to improve cities since 1974. Her free campus presentation, which follows her speech to the Economic Club of Marquette County the previous evening, is scheduled from 9-10 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 20, in 102 Jamrich Hall. Coletta will address the qualities that make a city appealing to people who want to live and work there, and how to turn ideas for developing creative cities into a reality.


As one of the first urban pioneers to move into a loft in downtown Memphis – where she still lives today – it is evident that her commitment is more than professional … it’s personal. Her firm Coletta & Company anticipates trends and develops action-oriented public policy. She conceived and wrote the Talent Magnet Report , the first city blueprint aimed at attracting and retaining the creative class. She also co-authored Cultural Development in Creative Communities for Americans for the Arts. Full Story

Robare Wins Snow Day Contest

Cynthia Robare (Education) submitted the only correct entry in the annual Snow Day contest. She is shown being awarded a $50 gift certificate to the Marquette restaurant of her choice by the contest sponsor, Fred Joyal (Academic Affairs).

Robare was correct in guessing that Dec. 11 was the first day that on-campus classes were canceled because of inclement weather.

Saville Recruits ‘Under the Gun’

There are recruiting opportunities everywhere – even in the middle of a crisis. Just ask Kathy Saville (CITE). She was between conferences in California, driving to her next destination, when she stopped for a soda at a gas station on the corner of Pacific Coast Highway and Sunset Boulevard in Malibu.

The gas station had a nice balcony over looking the ocean. Saville decided to sit there and drink her soda on that sunny California morning. As she stepped onto the balcony, she saw a police car literally jump the curb and pull into the gas station. When she turned around to go enter the building, there stood a police officer with his gun pointing directly at her telling her to get inside. Without a word, she did as she was told.

Saville and seven others were told to stay inside the gas station with no further instructions. A short time later they learned the officers were in the middle of a drug bust at one of the outside pumps. Full Story


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Updated: May 4, 2004