HR Faculty/Staff News Now Volume 1, Issue 9 – May 27

Stark Campus Professor Featured on PBS ‘Nature’ Bonus Segment

Dr. Matthew Lehnert, associate professor of Biological Sciences, and his students at the Kent State Stark Campus are included in “A Butterfly’s Proboscis,” a bonus segment of the full PBS Nature episode called “Sex, Lies and Butterflies.”

In the recently released mini episode, Lehnert uses the latest technology to look deep into a butterfly’s proboscis – or its elongated sucking mouthpart – to determine the mechanism for how it feeds. Since 2010, Lehnert has studied how the mouthparts of butterflies and moths work, and he believes the way they ingest liquids could be used as a model to better deliver medicine to humans. The research also could allow doctors to sample smaller amounts of fluid inside cells to make a more accurate diagnosis of disease.

The film crew with PBS’ series “Nature” came to Stark County in 2017 to interview Lehnert after the show’s producer read about his work in a co-authored article titled ”Mouthpart Conduit Sizes of Fluid-feeding Insects Determine the Ability to Feed From Pores” featured in The Royal Society, a prominent science journal.

Dr. Stidham Investigates Why Trauma May Facilitate Personal Growth

Dr. Andrea Warner Stidham, assistant professor at the College of Nursing, is on a quest to understand why the period following a life-altering crisis may lead to post-traumatic growth with improved relationships and a renewed appreciation for life. Learn more.

Institute for Excellence Applications Closing Soon

Want to be accepted into the nation’s fourth ranked program for certificates with an emphasis on leadership and organizational development? Of course you do. But you have only until June 14 to submit an application for KSU’s Institute for Excellence.

The program begins in September 2019, and has two tracks for Administrators and Individual Contributors. The Administrator track is for faculty or staff who supervise others. The Individual Contributor track is for employees who do not supervise but have a desire to sharpen their leadership skills. Both tracks are for high performers and focus on the core leadership qualities associated with collaboration, coaching, communication, trust, emotional intelligence, resiliency and more.   

Employee eligibility requirements include:
•    A minimum of one year of university service
•    A rating of meets expectations or higher on the most recent performance evaluation
•    Approval by direct supervisor to attend

Visit the Institute for Excellence website for a complete list of criteria and other important information. Training and Development will notify supervisors and applicants regarding selection for the Institute for Excellence in late June. 

Contact Renee Romine, director, Training and Organizational Development, at 330-672-0898 or Wendy Gold, program manager, at 330-672-0899 if you have questions or comments. Administrators click here to apply. Individual Contributors click here to apply

WKSU Awarded General Excellence OAPME Prize For Fifth Year

WKSU staff was honored with 10 awards from Ohio Associated Press Media Editors (OAPME) in a Columbus ceremony on May 4. Top honors went to WKSU for General Excellence-Radio, the fifth consecutive year the newsroom earned the acknowledgement. The OAPME Awards reflect stand-out work created in 2018.

WKSU “Morning Edition” host Amanda Rabinowitz repeated last year’s success with a first-place award for Best Sportscast for her conversation with Plain Dealer columnist Terry Pluto about mental health and Cleveland Cavaliers star Kevin Love. Rabinowitz and Pluto are heard discussing sports weekly in the Wednesday View from Pluto segment. Rabinowitz was recognized as well with a second-place nod for Best Anchor.

Reporter/producer Kabir Bhatia followed up 2018’s win for Best Use of Sound with a first-place award in the same category for 2019. His sound-rich story focused on community tryouts for people wanting to sing the National Anthem for the Akron RubberDucks. Judges said, “In this feature, the sound is the story, and it’s captured well.”

The WKSU News Staff shared two first-place prizes for group efforts. The six-part series “Navigating the Path to Mental Health” examined access and barriers to mental health care in Northeast Ohio. The series culminated with a community forum and mental health fair at the Akron-Summit County Public Library. Station staff was also honored for regional coverage of the 2018 midterm elections, including field reporting and Facebook Live interviews of in-studio guest experts.

Other second-place awards went to reporter/producer and local “All Things Considered” host Jeff St. Clair for Best Enterprise Reporting (for a pair of reports on “Industry 4.0” in Cleveland) and for Best Newscast, Mark Arehart for Best Spot News Coverage (for his story on the launch of Goodyear’s final Blimp in its Wingfoot series); and the WKSU News and Digital staff for Best Digital Presence.

Exercise Your Brain 28-Day Challenge Begins June 3

From June 3 - June 30 this 28-day challenge will teach you the importance of brain health and how to maintain your mental status as you age.

There are many lifestyle factors that play a role in brain health. Research shows mental fitness, physical activity, proper sleep and an active social life are a few of the most important players in maintaining your brain. 

Throughout the 28-day program, you will try to practice at least two of the following brain health focus areas each day:

1. Mental Fitness 
2. Physical Activity 
3. Sleeping Soundly 
4. Social Interactions

Find out more and register to participate by 5 p.m. May 29, 2019. This challenge is available to all full-time, benefits eligible employees on all campuses. Employees participating in the Wellness Your Way incentive program can earn 20 Tier 2 points by completing all four weeks of the challenge.

Financial Wellness Lunch and Learn: To Your Credit

Live Streaming Available – All campuses

How much do you really know about credit reports and credit history?

On Wed., June 5, from noon - 1 p.m. in Heer Hall or via live streaming, PNC Financial Services will explain why credit is important, as well as how to order, read and analyze your credit report.

In addition, attendees will discover how they can build or improve their credit history and use credit even more effectively as they seek to achieve their financial goals. Please register for the in-person session or live streaming using the following links:

This lunch and learn is open to all full- and part-time employees. Employees participating in the Wellness Your Way incentive program can earn 10 Tier 2 points toward your financial wellness. For questions, contact Employee Wellness at 330-672-0392 or

Child Car Seat Safety Inspections and Child Fingerprinting

Kent State University's Employee Wellness Office is pleased to co-host its spring car seat safety inspection on Thursday, June 6, from 3-6 p.m. at Kent State's Child Development Center parking lot located at 775 Loop Rd. in Kent.

Statistics show that four out of five car seats are installed incorrectly. Keep your child safe by making sure your child's car seat is properly installed. If you have more than one car seat or base, feel free to have them each inspected. You do not have to have your child with you for the inspection, but they are certainly welcome to attend.

In addition, Guardians Advocating Child Safety and Protection (GASP) will be attending this event. GASP will be providing free digital fingerprinting and ID on a disc. Disc will include photos, video with voice, digital fingerprints, along with other pertinent information. No registration is required to take advantage of the GASP fingerprinting and ID disc offer. Children will need to be present for the digital fingerprinting.
Certified child passenger safety technicians from the Portage County Health Department will conduct the child car seat inspections. Kent State Police Department representatives also will be on hand to answer any safety-related questions you may have. 

We encourage you to reserve your appointment today for your car seat inspection! Individuals without an appointment will be accommodated as time permits on a first-come, first-served basis.

This event is sponsored by Kent State University Employee Wellness, Kent State Police Department, and Portage County Health Department. The car seat safety inspections and GASP fingerprinting and ID are open to Kent State employees, students and the surrounding community members. There are no costs for these services.

Save the Date for Veterans Day Recognition Program

Join in honoring America’s veterans and service members at this year's Veterans Day program, Honoring All Who Serve, on Thursday, Nov. 7, at 11 a.m. in the Kent Student Center Kiva.

This year’s keynote speaker will be Lieutenant Colonel Colleen VanNatta. Will Casterlow, Enrollment Management and Student Services Advisor at the Kent State Stark Campus, will serve as master of ceremonies.

You can view pictures and video from last year’s ceremony by visiting

Dates to Remember

National Caribbean American Heritage Month
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month

June 6

June 7
Summer Intersession classes end

June 8 - 10

June 10
Summer I and Summer II classes begin

June 14
Flag Day

June 16
Father's Day

June 21 
First day of summer (summer solstice)

POSTED: Thursday, May 23, 2019 11:07 AM
Updated: Friday, July 19, 2019 02:40 PM