Thursday, Nov. 10, 2011

Summer 4/10 Schedule Will Return

NMU will implement a 4/10, Monday-Thursday work schedule for the second consecutive summer. The decision is based in part on results of a recent campus-wide survey that showed convincing employee support for the plan. The university also recorded $90,000 in energy savings last summer, exceeding the original estimate of $50,000.

One issue identified through the survey was the short implementation notice last spring. Administrators wanted to provide plenty of advance notice this time so campus units can make necessary plans to minimize building use on Fridays, which should result in greater utility cost savings. Of the 522 employees who responded to the survey distributed by Human Resources, 314 either strongly agreed or agreed that NMU should repeat the 4/10 schedule. Eighty-nine had no opinion and 119 either disagreed or strongly disagreed. Responses also indicated most departments had minimal or no operational issues as a result of moving to the compressed schedule. Full Story


Campus Signage Effort Enters New Phase

The multi-phase effort to make it easier for visitors to find and navigate their way through campus continues. Two more entryway signs are being installed on campus this month: one at the intersection of Wright Street and Tracy Avenue; another at the entrance to the Berry Events Center and PEIF off Fair Avenue. They will be similar in design to the Seventh Street entryway (pictured), with a large sign on one side of the road, complemented by a smaller boundary marker on on the opposite side. Three of these boundary markers are also being installed near Cohodas at the corner of Presque Isle and Kaye Avenues, at the north entrance to the Superior Dome and on the west side of campus where Center and Lincoln Streets intersect. Full Story



TaLK - Teach & Learn Korea logoNMU Launches Initiatives in South Korea

NMU is among the first 17 U.S. universities to partner with the Teach and Learn in Korea (TaLK) program, which offers paid internships to undergraduates who teach English in rural elementary schools in South Korea. The program is sponsored by the National Institute for International Education under the direction of the South Korean Ministry of Education, Science and Technology. NMU International Programs screens and recommends candidates, then forwards their applications to the TaLK offices in Seoul. Those selected receive paid airfare, housing, health insurance and a monthly stipend. No Korean language skill is required. Full Story


Full screen previewNew Building Plan Submitted Instead of Jamrich Renovation

NMU submitted a new building concept to the state for consideration instead of a Jamrich Hall renovation/addition. Classrooms and offices would be housed in a facility attached to the southeast side of the Learning Resources Center. The Jamrich project was originally approved for planning (not construction) in the state's capital outlay bill last December. Through the planning process, the design team compared renovation plans to a new building concept and determined that a new building would cost less, reduce square footage, improve energy efficiency and offer greater flexibility in space utilization. There would also be less disruption because Jamrich, where 40 percent of NMU classes are held, can remain online during construction. The program statement submitted to the state on Nov. 4 as part of the capital outlay process reflects the new building plan. NMU will continue to work on the design of the new building with input from relevant departments and committees. The project will cost $33.4 million, which is $500,000 less than the Jamrich renovation.


Campus Speed Limit Increased

The speed limit on campus recently increased from 15 to 20 miles per hour, as evidenced by new signs installed a few weeks ago. The change was prompted by a revision to the state’s uniform traffic code. A provision in the code once gave Michigan’s universities and colleges, along with parks and cemeteries, the discretion to set speed limits lower than 25.

“A couple of years ago, they pulled universities and colleges out of that provision, leaving only parks and cemeteries,” said Mike Bath (Public Safety). “We worked with other institutions to try to put that back in legislatively, but with the economy and other pressing issues, it never made it to the front burner.” Full Story


Weapons Storage Available at Public Safety

NMU Public Safety expects an influx of weapons being registered for storage this week as student hunting enthusiasts gear up for Michigan’s firearm deer season Nov. 15-30. Faculty and staff are also welcome to drop them off at Public Safety in the morning for pickup later in the day, as university ordinance prohibits weapons anywhere else on campus, including vehicles.


The check-in/check-out procedure was recently automated with the help of a tracking system developed by Information Technology-Technical Services. Students used to fill out paper cards to register their weapons and Public Safety staff would manually write on those cards every time the weapon was checked out and back in. Full Story


Family-Friendly Musical Nov. 16-19

Forest Roberts Theatre will present the family-friendly musical, A Year with Frog and Toad. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday, Nov. 16-19, with an additional 1 p.m. matinee on Saturday. The musical remains true to the spirit of the classic children’s tales as it follows two great friends—the cheerful, popular Frog and the rather grumpy Toad—through four fun-filled seasons. Waking from hibernation in the spring, they plant gardens, swim, rake leaves and go sledding. They learn life lessons along the way, including a most important one about friendship and rejoicing in the attributes that make each of us different and special. The show includes performance flight sequences featuring bird characters. Ansley Valentine (CAPS) directs. Pictured are (bottom) Erin Powley as Frog and (top) Adam Lowe as Toad.


Faculty Invited to Nominate Student-Athlete Scholars

The NMU Athletic Council and Intercollegiate Athletics are sponsoring a new NMU Student-Athlete Scholar of the Month recognition program. Faculty members are encouraged to nominate student-athletes throughout the year who excel in the classroom, participate in research or other scholarly activity beyond what is required, assume campus/community leadership roles or demonstrate a commitment to community service. One student-athlete per month will be selected for the honor. For each nomination submitted, faculty members receive two complimentary tickets to an athletic event of their choice. "President Wong charged me, as chair of the NMU Athletic Council, to seek out ideas from council members on ways that we could highlight the outstanding scholarly accomplishments of our student-athletes," said Julie Rochester (HPER). "They regularly carry a higher average GPA compared with the rest of the student population and are typically involved in numerous campus and community activities." For more information, contact Rochester at


Lazarus Project Author Speaks at NMU

Aleksandar Hemon, author of the One Book One Community selection The Lazarus Project, will give a free presentation at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15, in the Great Lakes Rooms of the University Center. He will be available to sign books afterward. Hemon will also be interviewed by Stan Wright (WNMU-FM) at 11 a.m. and participate in a Q-and-A session at 2 p.m. in Jamrich 102.

The Lazarus Project was a finalist for the 2008 National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award. Hemon also is the author of three short story collections: The Question of BrunoNowhere Man, which also was a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist; and Love and Obstacles. He was born in Sarajevo and lives in Chicago.

"Echoes of War," a performance event related to The Lazarus Project and featuring vocalists and instrumentalists, will be held at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 17, in Reynolds Recital Hall. It is coordinated by Rob Engelhart (Music), who will also sing. Barbara Rhyneer (Music) will play violin. They will be joined by NMU vocal students and a cellist. The program includes the Bosnian, Serbian and Croatian national anthems in their original languages, folk songs and readings.

"With the national anthems sung at first in an innocent, lyric manner amid the folk songs, the eventual clashing and competitiveness we have planned at the end may portray the tragedy of ethnic conflict, and a vocal duet of the Benedictus will point toward a hopeful future," said Engelhart.


Jeff Gagnon’s position as director of Upward Bound at Northern is an extension of his past involvement in the program. As an NMU student in the ‘90s, Gagnon served Upward Bound in a variety of roles, ranging from tutor to English teacher.


“I’m from this area and so are my mom’s relatives,” he said. “I went to Marquette Senior High School, I student taught at Negaunee High School and my mother’s family is in western Marquette County, so I know what it’s like up here for these kids. To see them succeed and to grow as individuals and expose them to things they wouldn’t otherwise experience because they were in Upward Bound … that’s what I like the most.” Full Story



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Updated: November 10, 2011

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