Friday, April 30 , 2010

Lofts NMU Board Approves Housing, Dining Rates

The NMU Board of Trustees today approved 2010-11 housing and dining rates. The annual cost of a standard double-occupancy room and the “constant meal pass” option will be $7,822, an increase of $176. Trustees also authorized continuation general fund and designated fund budgets until new versions are approved when state higher education appropriations are finalized. The budgets will not exceed the current level, except for increases required by existing or newly negotiated union contracts. For these and other actions from today's meeting, read the Full Story.


Moodle NMU Adopts New Course Management System

NMU has adopted Moodle as its new course management system, following extensive evaluation and a four-week feedback period. The move was necessary because Blackboard Inc., which owns WebCT, will end all support by 2013. Matt Smock (Instructional Design, Technology, and Media) said the transition won’t happen overnight, but in stages, with full implementation targeted for the winter 2011 semester.

Full Story


Summer Facilities Projects Outlined

The NMU Board of Trustees finance committee on Thursday received an update on planned and potential summer facilities projects. Most involve routine boiler, roof and window replacements. Nearly $1.4 million in maintenance work is scheduled, with funding from long-term maintenance funds, university reserves and bond proceeds.

Full Story


Thai Delegates Sign MOU with Northern

Representatives of Bangkokthonburi University in Thailand visited Northern earlier this week to sign a Memorandum of Understanding. The agreement paves the way for student/faculty exchanges and collaborations on research and publications. Bangkokthonburi University is a private institution established about a decade ago. It has an enrollment of 20,000 and offers programs up to the doctorate level. Full Story


House Higher Ed Subcommittee Holds Hearing at NMU

A House Higher Education Appropriation Subcommittee hearing is scheduled for Monday, May 3, at NMU. The annual hearings are usually held in Lansing, but NMU was selected as the host site for testimony from four university presidents. The hearing is scheduled from 9:30-11:30 a.m. in the Huron/Erie rooms of the University Center and is open to the public.  NMU President Les Wong will be the first to testify, followed by the presidents of Lake Superior State University, Michigan Technological University and Western Michigan University.


Wells Fargo to Replace TCF

Effective July 1, Wells Fargo will replace TCF as Northern’s banking partner, operating a branch and ATM in the University Center and giving students and employees the option of linking their checking accounts to their Wildcat Express cards. Art Gischia (Business and Auxiliary Services) said existing cards will not have to be replaced unless the holder would like to link to a Wells Fargo account. In this case, a new card will be issued at no cost. Full Story


Distinguished Faculty Awards Presented

Larry Pagel (Business) and Eileen Smit (Nursing) are the 2010 Distinguished Faculty Award recipients. They will be honored at commencement for their university and professional contributions. Full Story


Employees Honored at Luncheon

NMU faculty and staff were recognized at an April 20 luncheon for reaching retirement or various years-of-service milestones. Awards were also presented for excellence in service, distinguished team service, and effective use of technology by staff. For details on the award recipients, read the Full Story.


Sled Dogs Teach Teamwork

Human Resources staff recently discovered there are several parallels between the teamwork required by sled dogs during a race and the qualities that employees must possess to work together most effectively and efficiently. The department conducts quarterly, internal team-building exercises to promote broader communication and increase its credibility in coaching other campus leaders on how to improve the team environment. For its latest training session, Human Resources invited Darlene Walch (AIS) to bring some of her sled dogs to campus for a demonstration and discussion. She purposely selected dogs of different genders, ages, sizes, abilities and temperaments to reflect a typical workplace. Full Story

Heating Plant Shutdown May 7

The annual Ripley Heating Plant shutdown for maintenance on the university’s boilers and steam distribution system will start the evening of Friday, May 7, and continue through Sunday, May 9. Heating, hot water and central air conditioning will be affected. For more information, contact Plant Operations at ext. 2292.


Annette Brown (Business) showcased her hidden talent as a pianist when she accompanied NMU’s Lake Effect Show Choir for two performances last week. While Brown generally prefers serving as the musical backdrop—someone who’s heard, but not necessarily seen—she will allow herself a rare moment in the spotlight at a community piano concert scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday at Peter White Public Library. Full Story


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Updated: April 30, 2010

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