Campus Transformation Continues to Build Momentum
The physical transformation of Kent State University’s flagship campus continues its strong momentum with several actions taken on Dec. 12 by Kent State University’s Board of Trustees.
After a competitive bidding and interview process, the Board hired The Ruhlin Company of Akron to oversee the construction and renovation projects known collectively as the “Foundations of Excellence, Building the Future” initiative.
During the next four years, the company will manage the scheduling, coordination, construction contracting, contract accounting and communications related to the initiative’s four primary capital projects, which total nearly $150 million and are being financed in part through the university’s issuance of $170 million in general receipts bonds: major renovations of the most heavily used science buildings (Cunningham, Smith and Williams halls) and a multidisciplinary research addition in the science mall area; construction of a new building for Kent State’s nationally respected College of Architecture and Environmental Design near the Kent State University Hotel and Conference Center that will open next June; the rehabilitation, reconstruction or replacement of the art complex; and construction of a new building on the science mall to house the College of Applied Engineering, Sustainability and Technology.
The Board also approved the use of $5.9 million in bond revenue funds for a project to renovate the Olson Center for Undergraduate Studies on the Kent Campus. The center, which provides extensive academic advising services and coordinates advising support throughout the university, was built in 1961 as a dining facility.
In addition, the Board approved the use of $2.5 million in bond revenue funds for a project to renovate the 10,000-square-foot Memorial Auditorium and Convocation Center (MACC) Annex for critically needed swing space as the university moves forward with its “Foundations of Excellence, Building the Future” initiative. The MACC Annex renovations will be completed next summer.
Board of Trustees Gavel Changes Hands
The gavel used by the chair of the Kent State University Board of Trustees was passed to Jane Murphy Timken as the Board passed a resolution of appreciation to acknowledge the many contributions of Trustee Jacqueline Woods, who completed a two-year term as Board chair on Dec. 12.
Woods, a former AT&T Ohio president, is serving a nine-year term on the volunteer Board that will continue through May 2013. The Board’s resolution commended Woods, a Solon resident, for providing “dynamic leadership at a remarkable time of growth and advancement for Kent State” and for her focus on the “bottom lines” of financial integrity and academic excellence.
Timken is a Canton resident who began her term as a Kent State Trustee in 2005. She is a graduate of Harvard College and she holds a law degree from American University. Timken has served as a magistrate in Common Pleas Court and practiced law, concentrating in employment and general civil litigation.
Click here to read more about these and additional Board actions.
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Kent State Names Dan Skinner WKSU General Manager
After a national search, Daniel E. Skinner has been named general manager of WKSU, Kent State University’s award-winning NPR-affiliated radio station. He began his new role on Jan. 2.
Skinner brings with him 32 years of experience in all aspects of public radio, including more than 20 years as a general manager, and in-depth knowledge of public-radio operations in university settings. He has a strong track record in fundraising, strategic planning, programming and community outreach.
Skinner served as president and general manager of Texas Public Radio (TPR) for more than six years. Based in San Antonio, TPR operates KSTX FM, an award-winning news and information station; KPAC FM, a classical music station; and KTXI FM, a news and classical music station in the Texas Hill Country. Previously, he was department head and general manager of Purdue University’s WBAA AM & FM (1992-2006); program manager and then manager of internal operations and programming for Ball State University’s WBST (1987-1992); and operations manager and then program director for Hutchinson Community College’s KHCC (1980-1987).
Skinner is a longtime advocate for public radio. He has been a member of Public Radio in Mid-America (PRIMA) since 1995 and is its current vice president. The organization serves as a forum on issues in public radio, advances the public radio industry and its services, and offers numerous professional-development opportunities. He was also vice chair of the Indiana Public Broadcasting Stations, a statewide consortium of public television and radio stations, and served on its executive committee.
Throughout his career, Skinner has been active in cultural and community organizations, including the Cultural Alliance of San Antonio, the World Affairs Council of San Antonio, the Tippecanoe Arts Federation and the Civic Theatre in Lafayette, Ind.
The Kansas native holds a bachelor’s degree in general studies with a focus on management from Wichita State University and a master’s degree in executive development for public service from Ball State University.
WKSU was founded in 1950 as a student-operated public radio station, broadcasting five hours a day, five days a week. The station joined as an affiliate of the burgeoning National Public Radio network in 1974 and increased its power to 50,000 watts in 1980, growing to become one of the most influential public radio organizations in Ohio and across the country.
In 2003, the station launched FolkAlley.com, a folk music-based Internet radio stream and content provider. WKSU programming is produced at its primary facility in Kent, as well as in satellite bureaus in Akron, Cleveland and Canton. With five towers and a repeater signal reaching out to listeners in 22 Northeast Ohio counties and parts of Western Pennsylvania, WKSU has the largest broadcast footprint of any radio station in Ohio. Along with its on-air signal, WKSU offers four distinct programming streams online at WKSU.org and over HD Radio in its broadcast area.
WKSU broadcasts NPR & Classical Music at 89.7 FM. WKSU programming is also heard on WKRW 89.3 FM in Wooster, WKRJ 91.5 FM in Dover/New Philadelphia, WKSV 89.1 FM in Thompson, WNRK 90.7 in Norwalk and W239AZ 95.7 FM in Ashland. The station broadcasts four HD Radio channels – adding WKSU-2 Folk Alley, WKSU-3 The Classical Channel and WKSU-4 The News Channel to the analog broadcast schedule. The WKSU website is www.wksu.org.
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Kent State Announces New Associate Vice President for University Communications and Marketing
Rebecca Murphy has been named associate vice president for University Communications and Marketing at Kent State University. Murphy previously served as the assistant dean of marketing and communications, enrollment and student services at Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management. Iris Harvey, Kent State’s vice president for university relations, made the announcement.
Murphy will serve as a key member of the leadership team of Kent State’s Division of University Relations. She will help to define, articulate and market the Kent State brand, and lead the development of integrated marketing strategies to advance the reputation and image of Kent State’s eight-campus system.
“Rebecca is the right person to join a great team during the most significant wave of change in higher education,” Harvey says. “She brings significant higher education experience, as well as a successful career with several of Northeast Ohio’s leading organizations and notable brands. We look forward to the contribution she can make in helping to enhance our global reputation and image.”
As assistant dean of marketing and communications, enrollment and student services at Case Western Reserve’s Weatherhead School of Management, Murphy was responsible for planning and executing the school’s marketing, communications and brand management initiatives. She also previously served as senior director of marketing, communications and external relations at Case Western Reserve, associate director of marketing for the Cleveland Museum of Art, director of marketing and communications at Six Flags Worlds of Adventure in Aurora, Ohio, and promotions manager at Geauga Lake Amusement Park.
Murphy is a member of the Public Relations Society of America and the American Marketing Association.
She has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration from the University of Akron.
For more information about Kent State’s University Communications and Marketing, visit www.kent.edu/ucm.
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Nominate a Kent State Faculty Member for the 2013 Outstanding Research and Scholarship Award by Jan. 20
You are invited to nominate a Kent State University faculty member for the 2013 Outstanding Research and Scholarship Award, formerly known as the Distinguished Scholar Award. Sponsored by the Division of Research and Sponsored Programs and the University Research Council, this award is intended to honor Kent State’s finest outstanding researchers and scholars. The awardees will be selected based on the quality of research and scholarship and the impact on society.
Who can be nominated?
Any Kent State faculty member can be nominated, except those who have previously received either the Outstanding Research and Scholarship Award or the Distinguished Scholar Award.
Click here to see a list of previous winners of the Distinguished Scholar Award.
Click here to see a list of previous winners of the Outstanding Research and Scholarship Award.
Who can nominate?
Any member of the Kent State community, including faculty, emeriti, staff, students and alumni can nominate a faculty member for the award. To nominate someone, you must submit a letter outlining the specific research and/or scholarly achievements of the nominee. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and attach your letter of support.
Nomination Deadline: Sunday, Jan. 20, at 11:59 p.m.
Finalists will be announced on the Kent State homepage on March 4.
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New Traffic Light and Stop Signs Installed on Kent Campus
Students and employees returning to Kent State University for the spring semester will encounter a couple of new traffic situations as they navigate campus.
A new traffic light has been installed at the intersection of Loop Road and Rhodes Road, near the Kent State Child Development Center. The new signal replaces the stop signs previously at that location.
Dean Tondiglia, associate director of public safety for the Kent State Police Department, says the new device will allow for better traffic control at the busy intersection, which is also close to the new University Edge student housing development on Rhodes Road.
In addition, two stop signs have been installed at the intersection of Loop Road and Jackson Road to assist pedestrian traffic across Loop Road.
“We are always looking for ways to improve public safety on campus, and both of these changes were made with that in mind,” Tondiglia says.
A detailed map of the Kent State campus can be found at www.kent.edu/campuses/maps/map.cfm.
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Important Information Regarding Student Registration For Classes
As we begin the new semester, the Office of the University Registrar asks for your assistance in making sure that all students are properly registered for their Spring 2013 courses.
As per university policy, only officially registered students are permitted to attend courses. The link to official class rosters is found in FlashFAST, under the "Faculty Advisor Toolbox" within the "Faculty and Advisor Tools" tab. Students who are not officially registered within the appropriate time period WILL NOT receive a grade or earn credit for the course even if they attend the entire course and complete all required work.
The schedule adjustment period for students to add full-term courses ends Sunday, Jan. 27. Students are able to withdraw from any or all full-term courses through Sunday, March 24. Deadlines for courses that meet outside the full part of term can be found on the “Detailed Class Search.” To access the “Detailed Class Search,” visit the Registrar's website at www.kent.edu/registrar, click the “Schedule of Classes” quick link, and select “Spring 2013.”
Instructors are asked to remind students that it is important to finalize and verify their registration within the proper timeframe. After the published deadlines, adjustments in registration will only be considered for review by the Office of the University Registrar in situations where students have fully complied with their responsibilities.
The deadline for submitting midterm grades (for freshmen only) and final grades can be found on the Registrar's website at www.kent.edu/registrar/calendars/index.cfm.
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Nominations for “Mothers, Mentors and Muses” End Jan. 25
“Mothers, Mentors and Muses” is the Women’s Center signature event that honors Kent State University faculty or staff. The recognition honors women who have made a significant difference in the life of a student or colleague. More than 100 women across the university have received this honor.
You are invited to nominate a Kent State woman for the 2013 “Mothers, Mentors and Muses” Women’s Center annual scholarship fundraiser. Nominations end Jan. 25.
This award is intended to honor women of Kent State who have served in any of three roles:
- Mother – one who has helped “birth” ideas, thoughts and academic endeavors in others, or who serves as a nurturing individual to others.
- Mentor – one who serves as a trusted counselor, colleague and role model.
- Muse – one who inspires creativity and artistic/academic passion in others.
Who can be nominated?
Any female Kent State faculty or staff, except those who have previously been honored at this event.
See the honorees from 2010, 2011 and 2012.
Who can nominate?
Any member of the Kent State community, including faculty, staff, emeriti and students can nominate.
To nominate a “Mother, Mentor or Muse,” click here to fill out the nomination form.
Nominees will be celebrated at the “Mother’s, Mentors and Muses” Women’s Center annual scholarship fundraiser in early March.
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Kent State’s VITA Program Seeks Volunteers to Assist in Its Free Services This Tax Season
Kent State University’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program is seeking volunteers to assist in a free tax-filing service this tax season for low- to moderate-income individuals who qualify to have their income taxes filed free of charge.
Paula DiVencenzo, business and finance tax manager at Kent State, says that she is seeking volunteers who would like to lend a helping hand while gaining valuable professional skills.
“Volunteers have meaningful interactions with clients and play a critical role in ensuring the clients take advantage of all the deductions and credits available to them,” DiVencenzo says. “Volunteers will receive free IRS training and support, which will lead to more confidence in their ability to prepare their own tax return and their friends’ and family’s returns, while gaining the invaluable real-world experience that looks good on a resume.”
Training sessions will begin the week of Jan. 14. Sessions related to foreign student and scholar returns will be held on Jan. 26 and Feb. 23. Volunteers are required to attend a training class or self-study online, and all volunteers will certify online.
DiVencenzo says that volunteering for the VITA program will help students enhance their communication, technical, problem-solving and leadership skills. Although students are encouraged to volunteer, the program is encouraging all members of the community to participate in the VITA program.
Andy Yan, accounting graduate student at Kent State, says that he gained valuable experience while volunteering for the Kent State VITA program. Yan says that he learned how to use TaxWise, a tax software program, as a volunteer.
DiVencenzo says that there are additional volunteer positions available that do not require certification, including greeters, clerical assistants and receptionists.
According to Yan, volunteering for the VITA program is a great learning experience and is quite rewarding.
“It’s good to help people,” Yan says. “I want to give back to our community.”
For more information about the Kent State VITA program, visit www.kent.edu/tax/vita.
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