Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2009

academic mall Preliminary Fall Enrollment Figures Released

NMU’s 10th-day enrollment report shows a total headcount of 9,258, an increase of 128 students—or 1.4 percent—over last fall’s preliminary figure. Paul Duby (Institutional Research) said the strength is at the junior level, where the number of students has increased by 107, or 6.5 percent. That has helped to offset a slight dip of 1.3 percent in graduate enrollment and a 3 percent decrease in new freshmen, which is a broad category comprised of part-time and full-time students. Undergraduate transfers are up significantly, from 435 to 524. Full Story


AAUP Reaches Tentative Agreement

Northern Michigan University and its faculty union, the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), have reached a tentative agreement on a new three-year contract. The ratification process will begin this week. If ratified, the contract will go before the NMU Board of Trustees at its Sept. 24-25 meeting. No details of the agreement will be publicized until it is officially ratified.


Compton Image Grant Promotes Global Engagement

Northern has received a $157,000 U.S. Department of Education grant to enhance the international studies curriculum and support professional development opportunities for faculty. Tim Compton (Modern Languages and Literatures), director of the grant, said creating new courses in international studies will be a primary objective.

“We plan to add an introductory course, which will give students some cohesion as a group that they’ve been missing,” he said. Full Story


Olympic Trials Open Tonight; NMU Heavily Involved

The U.S. Short Track Speedskating Olympic Trials begin tonight with time trials at the Berry Events Center. The four-day event will determine which athletes will compete at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver. Several NMU programs and courses are taking advantage of the unique academic service-learning opportunities created by this major event. Other students and employees are volunteering their time and talents. Full Story


United Logo 'Freedom Writers' Highlight UNITED Conference

Two of the students involved in the original “Freedom Writers” project that served as the basis for a Hollywood movie by the same name will give a presentation as part of the UNITED Conference at NMU. Their teacher, Erin Gruwell, gave these “unteachable” inner-city kids at a Los Angeles school their own voice by having them journal their experiences, emotions, challenges and triumphs. Full Story


Junoon Closes UNITED,

Opens Performing Arts Series

Junoon (center), a rock band hailed as "the U2 of Pakistan," will bring a rousing end to the UNITED Conference while simultaneously kicking off the NMU International Performing Arts Series.

The group's concert is slated for 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 1, in Kaufman Auditorium. For an overview of the entire 2009-10 series and ticket information, read the Full Story.


Homecoming Reception Sept. 23

Staff and faculty are invited to a Homecoming reception from 5-7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept.23, in the Peter White Lounge of the University Center. Sponsored by the NMU Alumni Association, the event will feature hors d’oeuvres, prize drawings and a cash bar. The grand prize is a night’s stay at the Landmark Inn and dinner for two at Capers. This year's celebration theme is "Inside the Game." For the full schedule of activities, visit Homecoming.


KP Taylor PHOTO Memorial Dedication Set for 9/11 Victim, NMU Alumnus

Lt. Col. Kip Taylor, an NMU alumnus ('85) and Marquette native who was killed in the 9/11 terrorist attack on the Pentagon, will be memorialized with the dedication of a plaque on campus. The ceremony will be held at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 26, at Veterans' Rock near the east entrance of the University Center. Northern's military science department is joining with community organizations and residents in planning the event, which coincides with the 40th anniversary of ROTC at NMU and the department's alumni weekend.Taylor was a graduate of the military science program, which his father once directed, and captain of the Wildcat basketball team.

"A cornerstone of strength for NMU cadets past, present and future remains Kip Taylor, for no other cadet sacrificed so much for his country," said Maj. Kyle Rambo (Military Science). "I was shocked and disappointed to learn that no formal memorial had ever been dedicated on campus. Susan Henderson, our department secretary, came up with the idea of positioning a plaque on Veterans' Rock. It is not my idea, but the result of multiple requests. I merely listened and agreed that action was needed to make this a reality."

Listing Makes Acronym Soup Easier to Digest

Acronyms and first-initial abbreviations abound on campus, from A (ACAC, AFSCME) to almost Z (UPCED, VSS). All-caps conundrums can pop up in conversation, e-mails and printed material. They've been known to cause alphabet angst, particularly among those new to Northern.

"During the training seminar for my UN391 class, the participants were all asked to list off possible causes of stress that incoming freshman may encounter," said Michael Treacy, teaching assistant. "One of the first things mentioned was acronyms. It was agreed upon by pretty much everyone that they, too, had had a difficult time adjusting to the use of so many acronyms when they first attended Northern. They may be convenient, but only if you know what they stand for first."


NMU is hardly unique in this regard, but an online listing has been developed to decode the words behind the letters and hopefully clear up any confusion. Send additions, deletions or changes to commark@nmu.edu.


Bill Pistulka worked in the traditional public school system for 27 years in a variety of roles—classroom teacher, principal and superintendent.

He puts that extensive professional background to use, but in a different context, as Northern’s charter schools officer. Pistulka said this relatively new branch of education is often misunderstood. Full Story


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Updated: September 10, 2009

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