Friday, Dec. 16, 2011

NMU Board Approves New Charter School

The NMU Board of Trustees authorized a new charter school that will open in the fall of 2012 in the Willow Run district near Ypsilanti. The South Pointe Scholars Charter Academy will be a newly constructed facility—initially housing K-5, but building up to K-8. It will be managed by National Heritage Academies, an educational service provider that also manages Northern’s two existing charter schools downstate: Burton Glen and Walton. The latter was reauthorized as a school of excellence under Michigan’s “smart cap” legislation. This created an opportunity for NMU to charter a new school, bringing its total to six. For this and other action taken at today's meeting, read the Full Story.


Formula Funding Discussion Escalates


The NMU Board of Trustees approved the 2012-13 budget development submission to the State of Michigan Budget Office. Instead of an operating budget request, as required in previous years, Michigan’s public universities were asked to supply suggestions for performance measures, goals and other factors that should be considered for a formula funding metric. If the state pursues a formula, Gavin Leach (Finance and Administration) said there are a few conditions universities agree are important: reverse the decline in state support for higher education; don’t take money away from one school to benefit another; and develop a two-prong strategy for higher education appropriations that includes performance-based funding as an incentive for improvement and funding for extraordinary enrollment growth over time. Full Story


Faculty Honored at Celebration

Five NMU faculty members were recognized at the annual Celebration of Excellence in Teaching and Scholarship Ceremony on Dec. 8 in the University Center. Award recipients were (from left): Craig Rademacher (HPER), technology innovation; Carol Strauss Sotiropoulos (Modern Languages and Literatures), excellence in scholarship; Mark Shevy (CAPS), technology innovation; Amy Orf (Modern Languages and Literatures) and Sandra Imdieke (Education), both excellence in teaching. Full Story


Stars Inspire Poets


Many poets and songwriters have looked to the nighttime sky for material and inspiration. Think of “Evening Star” by Edgar Allan Poe or “Aquarius” from the musical Hair. Students in a graduate-level poetry workshop took a recent field trip to the NMU observatory for the same purpose. The idea struck Beverly Matherne (English) at the fall convocation, when she heard about an interdisciplinary project to build a mount for the NMU telescope. She contacted Mark Jacobs (Physics) about the prospect of combining their disciplines for an evening of stargazing. The event gave her writers a new perspective and allowed physics students to share their knowledge with an audience as assistant tour guides. Full Story



Intel Lab Putting Products to the Test


NMU students employed at the recently created Intel Lab in the Learning Resources Center are testing wireless software and working on a robotics project at the request of the technology company. The lab, located south of Fieras restaurant, is an extension of the existing partnership between Intel and NMU. Full Story


LRC Patio Going Smoke-Free

The patio outside the Starbucks Lounge at the Learning Resources Center is being designated a no-smoking zone in response to complaints of smoke being pulled into the building through the air intakes located along the exterior wall. Signs reflecting the change will be posted on the patio and on the doors leading outside. The smoking receptacles will be removed. Full Story



Seaborg Center Promotes STEM Education

NMU's Seaborg Center is participating in the Michigan STEM Partnership to promote the education and awareness of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The Seaborg Center hosted a meeting last month that brought together local community and NMU leaders to discuss how they could increase STEM education in the Upper Peninsula. Full Story


Snow Gnome Surprise

A snow-sculpted version of Norman the Northern gnome recently stood guard at the west entrance to Cohodas Hall.

Unfortunately, his surprise appearance was short-lived. The mild temperatures and rainfall have reduced the poor chap to a puddle. Unlike Frosty, no magic from Santa can return Norman to his former glory. Perhaps Cory Fountaine, an art and design major and student employee in Communications and Marketing, will unveil a second installment of his creation when winter arrives for good and Norman is likely to have a little more staying power.



Officer Adam Maynard (Public Safety) hasn’t had to travel far in life—not even off campus—to achieve his professional goals.

When the Marquette native wanted to earn a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, he stayed in his hometown to attend Northern. When he needed to complete the required training for a career in law enforcement, he enrolled in the NMU Regional Police Academy. And the first job he landed after graduation was with NMU Public Safety. Full Story



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Updated: December 16, 2011

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