June 16, 2003

This week:

* Summer Children's Theatre, "Peter Rabbit and Me," 10 a.m., June 17-19, and 10 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., June 20, Fowler Center. Central Box Office, 972-ASU1, or http://tickets.astate.edu/

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Federally funded McNair grant awarded to ASU
A program that will help students achieve their goal of graduate education will be coming to Arkansas State University.  ASU was successful with its application for a grant under the Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program, administered by the federal TRIO program.  The grant of $943,143 will support the program at ASU.  Participants in the McNair program are students from disadvantaged backgrounds who have demonstrated strong academic potential.  McNair institutions, like ASU, work closely with the participants through their undergraduate requirements, encourage their entrance into graduate programs, and track their progress to successful completion of advanced degrees. By helping students prepare for the challenges of advanced research and scholarship, the program will help boost the number of doctoral degrees awarded to students from underrepresented backgrounds.  Dr. Andy Sustich, interim dean of Arts and Sciences, and Dr. Robyn Hannigan, geology, prepared the grant proposal.  See details at the program website.

SSQRL makes its 'first run'
So what is SSQRL?  That's the Social Science Quantitative Research Lab at ASU.  The lab recently completed its first order, according to co-directors Dr. William McLean and Dr. Patrick Stewart in the Political Science Department.  Located in the International Student Center, the lab provides services to individuals, businesses, and organizations who desire public opinion, data, data mining, and program and policy evaluation data.  The first use of the new lab was co-sponsored by the Department of Political Science, the Master of Public Administration (MPA) program, and the United Way of Greater Jonesboro.  The inaugural polling data, gathered by telephone, will be used to assess the social service and community needs of Greater Jonesboro.  Results will be distributed through local news media outlets.  Congratulations to all involved with bring the lab to fruition.

Topping out ceremony planned for June 26
A "topping out" ceremony is being planned at the Biosciences/Biotechnology Building under construction on the south edge of the campus.  The event will start at 11 a.m. on Thursday, June 26, at the construction site.  Watch next week's edition of Inside ASU for more details.

'Welcome Week' calendar deadline approaching
When new students arrive in August, we want to make them feel as welcome as possible . . . the time designated for this purpose is Welcome Week, Aug. 23-27. It's not too early to plan activities . . . in fact, if the event you are planning is open to all incoming students, you need to provide information for the Welcome Week calendar by July 1.  "Groovin' on the grounds" is the theme this year.  Let Neely Branch, director of Student Involvement, hear from you about your plans if you haven't already contacted her.

Graduates on commencement
list are from broad area
Now that the final list of graduates has been compiled for the spring semester, a quick look at the class distributions is interesting.  Of the 978 degrees awarded, 91 were graduate level.  A total of 194 seniors were recognized for academic achievement, either through their Honors work or their high grade point average (summa, magna or cum laude), or both.  While most of the grads were from Arkansas, 52 were from our neighboring state of Missouri; 66 were from 22 other states; and 19 were from 12 other countries.

Faculty opinion pieces invited
Here's an another opportunity for faculty members . . . The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette will consider publishing opinion articles and commentary on the op-ed page about timely and interesting topics, provided the writer has pertinent academic preparation.  Before developing a complete article, it's usually a good idea to submit a short summary to the page editor.  Contact Tom Moore in University Communications for details.

Ideas and material are welcome
Repeated from last edition: We are reminding the campus community that Inside ASU includes news and information for all faculty and staff.  You may submit information for possible inclusion to Tom Moore, tmoore@astate.edu, in the University Communications office.

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