UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

Full stage, full house forecast for Collage concert

Photo of program from a past Collage ConcertThe big start to the year will be Saturday, Sept. 12, 7:30 p.m., Aycock Auditorium.

Big is the word. Over 300 students from the UNCG School of Music, Theatre and Dance will perform, along with many of the school’s world-class faculty members, making this the most spectacular event of the year.

Collage is captivating and distinctive, featuring a range of performers presenting one riveting work after another without pause. Special lighting enhances the experience and directs the audience’s attention to performances in multiple locations around the auditorium. It’s a non-stop evening of virtuosic performances.

Collage has been completely sold out for five consecutive years. A sell-out is expected again. Tickets went on sale on July 1, and hundreds have already been sold.  Mark your calendar and plan to purchase your tickets in advance.

All proceeds benefit student scholarships in the School of Music, Theatre and Dance.

Ticket information is at performingarts.uncg.edu/collage.

Greensboro and UNCG: a shared fate

Photo of Chancellor-elect Dr. Franklin D. Gilliam Jr. speaking at Greensboro’s Koury Convention CenterJust 13 days after moving to the Piedmont Triad from the Los Angeles area, Chancellor-elect Dr. Franklin D. Gilliam Jr. addressed an audience of more than 800 business leaders at Greensboro’s Koury Convention Center for the annual “State of the Community” luncheon.

“We share a common fate so together we must collaborate,” Gilliam said Aug. 26, emphasizing the importance of the local community and UNCG working together.

“One thing I’ve noticed about Greensboro is that people actively care about each other,” Gilliam stressed. “That’s good for people, good for the community and good for UNCG.”

Throughout his 10-minute speech he highlighted the importance of culture in defining UNCG and, in closing, left the audience with two numbers: $1 billion and 1,000,000 hours, referring to UNCG’s economic impact on the Piedmont Triad and to the number of hours each year that UNCG students contribute to community service.

Dr. Gilliam officially assumes responsibilities at UNCG on the eighth of September.

Photography by Martin Kane

Show your school colors this Friday

Photo of students handing out Blue and Gold T-ShirtsActing Chancellor Dana Dunn and Chancellor-elect Franklin Gilliam Jr. encourage everyone to show their school colors each Friday:

Now that classes are in session, it’s time to observe our first Blue and Gold Friday of the 2015-16 school year! Please join us and show off your Spartan spirit by wearing blue and gold on September 4, which is College Colors Day. More than 100 colleges and universities nationwide will encourage their fans to show their pride by wearing school colors.

Remember, Blue and Gold Fridays continue throughout the year! Take a photo of yourself wearing our school colors and you could be our featured Blue and Gold Fan of the Week on uncgspartans.com. Post or tweet your photo with #letsgoG or e-mail directly to bluegold@uncg.edu.

Go Spartans!

Nights of a thousand stars (and some planets) at UNCG

Photo of telescope at the Horne ObservatoryCome see constellations of natural beauty.

The UNCG Physics and Astronomy Department has announced its upcoming Planetarium and Three College Observatory (TCO) show schedule for the Fall 2015 semester. Admission is free for all showings – but register soon, as they are always popular

UNCG Planetarium Public Shows
Sept. 18, 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 21, 7:30 p.m.

TCO Public Nights
Oct. 16, 7:45 p..m
Nov. 20, 7 p.m…
Dec. 12, 7 pm

Planetarium shows are held at UNCG in the Petty Science Building. Seating is limited so reservations are required. The planetarium is in 310 Petty Science. Parking is available in the McIver Street Parking Deck. The planetarium features a Spitz Projector in a 20-foot dome. The show will feature the sky constellations as well as the motions of the moon, sun and planets. You may reserve up to five tickets on the web at physics.uncg.edu/planetarium/upcoming-events/.

TCO shows are held at the Observatory located near Snow Camp, NC, approximately eight miles south of Burlington. Here, one may view the skies through one of the largest telescopes in the southeastern United States. Public viewing nights begin shortly after sunset and continue for approximately 60 – 90 minutes. Observation sessions include sighting star clusters, nebulae, galaxies, double stars, planets and the moon. Visit physics.uncg.edu/tco/ for more detail and to reserve tickets.

Mental Health Month: Talk by Guardian of the Golden Gate Bridge and grateful survivor

Their viral photograph on the bridge has become an iconic image of our generation. One man, despondent, threatens to jump off the bridge. The other talks to him calmly, imploring him to live.

On Tuesday, Sept. 15, a decade after their paths fatefully crossed, the two men will take the stage together at 7 p.m. in UNCG’s Aycock Auditorium. Sergeant Kevin Briggs, a retired member of the California State Highway Patrol, is known internationally as The Guardian of the Golden Gate Bridge, in recognition of the hundreds of lives he saved during his tenure. Kevin Berthia, who will forever be associated with the image of a hopeless young man on a ledge of the Golden Gate Bridge, will share the stage with the man who talked him off that ledge, and share the story of what brought him to that moment – and what has happened since that March day in 2005.

Part of UNCG’s fourth annual Mental Health Month efforts, “The Bridge Between Life and Suicide” is a community-wide endeavor aimed at furthering the conversation about the reality of suicide, and energizing prevention efforts. UNCG Student Health Services, along with the Dean of Students Office, UNCG Police, and the Department of Counseling and Educational Development, has partnered with community groups, including Cone Health Foundation, Weaver Foundation, Sandhills Center, and the Mental Health Association in Greensboro to bring both men to the Triad. Free continuing education credit will be available and provided through the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC).  The event is free and open to the public.

A full schedule of Mental Health Month events at UNCG includes:

Yoga on the EUC Lawn (Kaplan Commons)
Tuesday, Sept. 8; Wed., Sept. 16; Monday, Sept. 21 – 5-6 p.m.
No experience necessary. Bring a towel or yoga mat & water bottle

Pinwheels for Prevention
September 8-14
A colorful array of pinwheels will be displayed on the EUC Lawn (Kaplan Commons) to symbolize the 1,100 college students lost to suicide each year. This will coincide with World Suicide Prevention Day (Sept. 10), and draw attention to the need for awareness and a proactive response to the threat of suicide.

Raise Your Voice
Thursday, September 9 at 7 pm
EUC Starbucks
Open mic night! Join us for an evening of spoken word as we share our stories and talents. For more information or to sign up to perform, email sefrey@uncg.edu

Check Up from the Neck Up – Mental Health Screening Day
Thursday, Sept. 10, noon-2 p.m.
Counseling Center (Student Health Services) & the Office of Multicultural Affairs (EUC)

The Bridge: Between Life and Suicide
Tuesday, September 15 at 7 pm
Aycock Auditorium
Two men named Kevin met on a bridge. The photo of this powerful encounter went viral. Hear their stories.

Careers in Mental Health
Wednesday, September 16 from noon-1 p.m.
Faculty Center (College Ave.)
Jonathan Adams from the Career Services Center will provide an overview of different carrer options and pathways in the mental health field.

Unity Tailgating
Thursday, September 17 at 6 p.m.
UNCG Soccer Stadium
Celebrate National Recovery Month and cheer on the women’s soccer team as they battle Florida State University. Free food, swag, and fireworks!

From Restraints to Recognition: Thriving with Mental Illness
An evening with author Melody Moezzi
Tuesday, September 22, at 6 p.m.
EUC Auditorium
Author, attorney and UN Global expert Melody Moezzi, who has bipolar disorder, speaks out on behalf of those stigmatized by mental illness.

UNCG Food Recovery Network

Photo of Food Recovery Network studentsThe Food Recovery Network chapter at UNCG is kicking off its 2015-16 school year.  Food Recovery Network is a national nonprofit that works to connect students to fight food waste and hunger on and off campus by recovering the surplus food from dining services, and donating it to non-profit agencies in the community.

The UNCG FRN chapter was founded during the Spring 2015 semester and has recovered 756 pounds of food from UNCG Dining Services since then.

In collaboration with student and non-student organizations on campus, the group aims to support and promote already existing organizations that are doing similar work in the community. They also hope to create an inclusive community at UNCG that focuses on food insecurity and nutrition, food waste and sustainability, and fighting hunger.

This semester, the food will be recovered every Monday and Thursday between 3:30 to 6 p.m. and then donated to The Salvation Army and Greensboro Urban Ministry as well as the Boys and Girls Club. For more info on the FRN at UNCG, like their Facebook Page or send an email to the chapter president.

By Elisven Saavedra, UNCG FRN chapter president, for UNCG Sustainability eNewsletter

Help identify external funding

Faculty and graduate students often require external funding for research, scholarship, and creative activity. Explore how to get the most from grant seeking databases, including SPIN, GrantSelect, Grant Advisor Plus, and the Foundation Center.

SPIN is a new addition: there’ll be two “SPIN only” workshops in September. The October workshops will provide training on all funding search tools at UNCG.

Participants learn to search for possible funding opportunities, practice identifying eligibility, and realize the importance of key words. Attendees will have opportunities to access databases and engage in searches related to their topic of interest.

“Show me the Money! A Guide To and Through Grant-Seeking Databases
SPIN only:
Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015
noon-1 p.m.
Bryan 211

Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015
11 am-noon
Curry 304

Friday, Oct. 2, 2015
Noon-2 p.m.
Curry 304

Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2015
4-6 pm
Curry 304

The sessions are presented by University Libraries and Office of Sponsored Programs.

To register, visit https://workshops.uncg.edu/workshops-by-category.jsp?cat_id=77001240

Those with questions may contact Gerald Holmes gvholmes@uncg.edu 336-256-0273 or Aubrey Turner aubrey.turner@uncg.edu 336-334-4920.

Free ways for faculty/staff to stay healthy

Photo of faculty/staff member waving in the poolHow does Yoga, Pilates and meditation sound? Or how about cycling sessions, water aerobics or pick-up basketball?

UNCG’s Active U and Mindful U, exclusively for UNCG staff and faculty, will return the week of Sept 8.

Additionally, all faculty and staff can enjoy Aqua Aerobics every Monday and Wednesday. The sessions are 5:15-6:15 p.m. in the Rosenthal Pool in the Coleman Building (former HHP Building).

HealthyUNCG, in partnership with Campus Recreation, presents UNCG employees these group fitness opportunities.

Mindful U will begin September 8 at its new time, 11:30 – 12:30 p.m., at the Rec Center.

Active U will begin September 11 at the regular time of noon – 1 p.m at the Rec Center.

Active/Mindful U is focused on group fitness. Classes vary week by week; the first Mindful U session is Yagalates. The first Active U session is High-intensity interval training (HIIT).

You do not need to be a member of the Rec Center to enjoy these offerings. You do not need to reserve your spot for Aqua Aerobics or for Wednesday Noon Ball, a popular time for casual pick-up basketball games through Active U. Noon Ball and Aqua Aerobics are free-admission for employees with SpartanCard I.D.

To reserve your spot for Active U or Mindful U – or to learn more – email iFitness@uncg.edu.

Complete details including session schedules and offerings are at http://healthyuncg.wp.uncg.edu/programs/activeumindfulu/

UNCG employee workshops for ‘culture of care’

In an effort to create a culture of care, the Dean of Students Office invites and encourages you to attend workshops specifically designed for faculty and staff. Visit http://sa.uncg.edu/dean/uncg-cares/ to register to attend. For additional information, contact the Dean of Students Office at 4-5514.

UNCG Still Cares
Friday, Sept. 11, 2015
2-4 p.m.
EUC Joyner Room

“UNCG Cares” about students! During this 2-hour training for UNCG faculty and staff, participants learn about types of distress for students, recognizing signs of distress, strategies for reaching out to students, active listening skills, effective referral, and the resources available on campus to assist students. By creating an environment of support, students in distress may seek help before issues rise to the crisis level. After completing the training, each participant is given a decal/sticker with the “UNCG Cares” logo to display in his or her office.

UNCG Cares: Our Critical Responders
Friday, October 23, 2015
2-3:30 p.m.
EUC Sharp Room

This specialized UNCG Cares training is designed for frontline staff and their supervisors. The training will help staff members identify individuals in distress and those who may become a risk, appropriately handle the individual and create a safety plan for themselves and their office. We encourage supervisors to attend this UNCG Cares training with their frontline staff members in order to create the safety plan for their office and to spend one-on-one time with their staff addressing safety concerns.

Ansel Elkins launches MFA readings

Portrait photo of Ansel ElkinsAnsel Elkins, recipient of the prestigious Yale Younger Poet Award, will read from her lauded first volume of poetry Sept. 3 to launch the UNCG MFA in Creative Writing Fall 2015 series. A UNCG alumna, she has joined the English Department’s MFA in Writing program as a visiting assistant professor of English.

The full schedule of readings:

Thursday, September 3, 7 p.m., EUC Maple Room, Ansel Elkins (poetry): “Blue Yodel”

Thursday, October 1, 7 p.m., EUC Maple Room, Bryn Chancellor (fiction): “When are you Coming Home”

Thursday, October 15, 7 p.m., Faculty Center, Kathleen Driskell (poetry) and James Tate Hill (fiction): “Academy Gothic”

Thursday, November 19, 7 p.m. Scuppernong Books: “Will Read for Food” Benefit Reading for Greensboro Charities, with multiple readers from the UNCG MFA faculty and beyond.

Global Opportunities Center garners $500,000 grant for Greensboro

Aerial photo of UNCG campus and downtown Greensboro skylineA new international economic engine, the Global Opportunities Center, may soon be a part of Greensboro thanks to the hard work of a group from local organizations and a $500,000 award from the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

The idea, a downtown center that will link a variety of resources from local colleges and universities, businesses, non-profits and government organizations to create new international opportunities for students, businesses and community members, was the winning concept in a competition to generate innovative ways to spur economic activity. The recently announced award is part of the SC2 Visioning Challenge Grant received by the city of Greensboro in 2012.

The idea for the Global Opportunities Center came from UNCG’s Office of Research and Economic Development which then led a planning effort with participation from other local colleges and universities, the NC Small Business and Technology Development Center, nonprofit group Boundless Impact, businesses and many more.

Full story at UNCG Now.

By Joe Gallehugh

UNCG Sustainability Film & Discussion Series

Photo of entrance to the Weatherspoon Art MuseumUNCG’s Weatherspoon Art Museum presents the tenth season of the longest running program of its kind in the region, the UNCG Sustainability Film & Discussion Series. It continues to lend a voice to environmental sustainability and climate change issues affecting our community and the world.

Since 2006, more than 5,000 attendees have attended to view more than 60 documentary films, ranging in topics from consumerism to waste, agriculture to water, and transportation to energy.  Please join us and bring a friend to celebrate ten consecutive years with encore screenings of audience favorites and post-film discussions.

The UNCG Sustainability Film & Discussion Series is free to attend, open to the public, and hosted monthly on Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. in UNCG’s Weatherspoon Art Museum. The program is also supported in part by the the UNCG Office of Sustainability, University Libraries, and the Environmental and Sustainability Studies Program. Questions? Contact Sarah Dorsey.

2015-16 Monthly Event Schedule:

Aug. 27, 2015 – An Inconvenient Truth (2006)

Sept. 24, 2015 – Who Killed the Electric Car (2006)

Oct. 22, 2015 – King Corn (2007)

Nov. 12, 2015 – Waste Land (2010)

Jan. 21, 2016 – Living Downstream (2010)

Feb. 25, 2016 – Overburden (2015)

March 17, 2016 – Just Eat It (2015)

April 21, 2016 – UNCG Sustainability Shorts Film Competition

UNCG and Hurricane Katrina relief service trips

Photo of UNCG students working during service trip to New Orleans, March 2006UNCG’s Office of Leadership and Service-Learning sponsored service trips to the Gulf Coast for relief in the wake of 2005’s Hurricane Katrina from 2005 to 2011. Several years there were multiple trips.

In total, 474 UNCG volunteers traveled to do service, for an accumulated 15,642 hours of service.

Dr. Rick Reitzug (Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations) went on 10 UNCG trips – six to New Orleans, three to Biloxi, and one to Waveland, Miss, “the exact location where Katrina made landfall,” he recalled this week.

He once wrote in an ELC newsletter (after his ninth UNCG trip to the region) about the “moral purpose” that underlies the trips. “On these trips, everyone is engaged in very demanding physical work, often in hot, humid weather and atrociously filthy conditions – 4 years of post-Katrina mold, cockroaches, rotting wood, etc. But no one EVER complains. I think it’s because everyone is working not for themselves, but in service to others.”

A recap after the 2008-09 trips in OLSL archives says, “Each participant’s experience is different, but they typically come away from the trips with three things in common: surprise at just how much is yet to be done in the region, a determination to give back more to the Gulf and their home communities, and a lasting bond with the other participants.”

Dr. Cathy Hamilton, director of the UNCG Office of Leadership and Service-Learning, says that several students went first as trip participants, then trip leaders for multiple trips and then moved to live and work in New Orleans upon graduation.

A look back at the service-learning trips to the Gulf Region:

December 16, 2005 Catholic Social Services, Office of Long Term Recovery
(Diocese of Biloxi) Biloxi, Miss. (poor, elderly disabled)

March 2006 Hilltop Rescue and Relief, New Orleans, LA

May 2006 Hilltop Rescue and Relief, New Orleans, LA

December 2006 Hilltop Rescue and Relief, New Orleans, LA

March 2007 Camp Coastal Outpost, Bay St. Louis, Miss.

May 2007 1. Rhino:  Rebuilding Hope in New Orleans, New Orleans,
2. Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, New Orleans, LA

January 2008 1. Biloxi, Miss.
2. Camp Hope, New Orleans, LA

March 2008 1. Seashore United Methodist Assembly, Biloxi, Miss.
2. Pass Christian, Miss.

January 2009 1. Relief Spark, Inc., River Ridge, LA
2. Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, Houma, LA
Working with Rebuilding Together

Spring Break 2009 1. Pearlington, Miss.
2. Biloxi, Miss.

January 2010 United Saints Recovery Project, New Orleans, LA

March 2010 Biloxi, Miss.

January 2011 Adullam Christian Fellowship and City of Hope, Arabi, LA

Compiled by Mike Harris (information courtesy OLSL)
Photo courtesy Dr. Rick Reitzug, UNCG service trip to New Orleans, March 2006
See other Katrina-related posts in CW this month:
10 years ago, Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf; Steve Kroll-Smith’s research
Tara Green: Hurricane Katrina in reality and as metaphor

Washington Monthly: UNCG among ‘best bang for the buck’

Image of badge icon for Washington Monthly's Best-Bang-For-The-BuckUNCG is ranked No. 8 in the category of Best Bang for the Buck in the Southeast category of the 2015 Washington Monthly College Rankings.

The publication rates UNCG No. 18 nationally in the category of “social mobility.” Their social mobility category gives colleges credit for enrolling many low-income students and helping them earn degrees.

UNCG ranks No. 110 nationally in its overall rankings.

The rankings were released August 24 and are posted at http://bit.ly/collegeguide2015.

Washington Monthly magazine’s College Guide takes “a different approach” to ranking the nation’s colleges and universities. They use three criteria: social mobility, research and civic engagement.

Washington Monthly rates colleges that are doing the best job of helping non-wealthy students attain marketable degrees at affordable prices. The rankings value colleges that contribute most to the public good.

Health 2.0: Redesigning Health & Wellness Coaching in the Community

The UNCG Health Coach Training Program and Northwest Area Health Education Center (AHEC) will hold their first annual conference to connect the community of providers who want to deliver quality healthcare that improves patient outcomes and satisfaction.

The conference will be Thursday, Oct. 1, 8:30 a.m -5 p.m., EUC Auditorium.

Register at northwestahec.org.

Among the presenters:
Susan Butterworth, Ph.D, MS, Principal and Founder of Q-consult, LLC, has over 20 years of experience in health promotion and chronic disease self-management. Dr. Butterworth will share strategies to help you improve health coaching outcomes and patient engagement.

  • Tom Wall, MD, Chief Medical Director of Triad Health Network
  • Grace Terrell, MD, Chief Executive Officer of Cornerstone Health Care
  • John Jenkins, MD, Vice President and Executive Medical Director, Primary
  • Cathy Cole, MSSW, LCSW, President of Cathy Cole Training

Conference sessions will focus on effective health coaching strategies that improve patient outcomes, best practices in health coaching in community and public health agencies, success stories of transformative value-based health care, and research updates on the effectiveness of health coaching.

Contact coaching@uncg.edu for further information.

UNCG Dance in the heart of Italy

Photo of UNCG dance students performing in a cathedral in Italy For 14 Spartan dance students, it was the artistic journey of a lifetime. For the Italian spectators, it was unforgettable as well.

UNCG Professor of Dance Janet Lilly took 14 UNCG dancers to Italy last month. They were in residence July 16-August 4 at the Pieve International School near the historical Medieval hill town of Corciano, in the Umbrian region of Italy.

Umbria is often referred to as the “green heart of Italy.” Surrounded by rolling hills, vineyards and olive trees, Villa Pieve is the perfect location for immersing students in the art and practice of dance choreography and performance. The dancers had daily contemporary dance technique, Iyengar yoga and dance improvisation and composition classes. There were also classes in Italian language and cooking, and day trips to Assisi, Perugia, Cortona and Florence.

The UNCG students had the unique opportunity to rehearse with New York choreographer Jacquelyn Buglisi for a performance of her work in collaboration with Italian visual artist Rosella Vasta, “The Table on Silence.”

The high point of their artistic journey was performing with Italian dancers from Perugia and Cortona on Aug. 2, known as the “Day of Forgiveness” in the Franciscan tradition, in the main piazza in Perugia and at the Basilica di Santa Chiara in Assisi.

This was the first time Janet Lilly, head of the UNCG Dance department, had led a group of Spartan students abroad.

Her favorite part of the Italian journey – aside from the Italian cuisine they all enjoyed? “Watching how the dancers grew as performers and the focus and commitment they brought to the two performances.” She noted that the Assisi performance began at 6:30 a.m., and the students were ready in every sense of the word.

Drawn from news item in SMTD newsletter.
Photo of UNCG dance students courtesy Giancarlo Belfiore

Faculty Senate schedule Fall 2015

The first meeting of Faculty Senate is next Wednesday, in the Virginia Dare Room. (See agenda highlights.) The faculty convocation will be two weeks afterward.

The full schedule for the fall semester:

Faculty Senate Meeting, Sept. 2, 2015, 3 p.m., Alumni House

General Faculty Meeting and Convocation, Sept. 16, 2015, 3 p.m., Alumni House

Faculty Senate Meeting, Oct. 7, 2015, 3 p.m., Alumni House

Faculty Senate Forum, Oct. 21, 2015, 3 p.m., Alumni House

Faculty Senate Meeting, Nov. 4, 2015, 3 p.m., Alumni House

Faculty Senate Forum, Nov. 18, 2015, 3 p.m., Alumni House

Faculty Senate Meeting, Dec. 2, 2015, 3 p.m., Alumni House

Additional information is here.

First Faculty Senate meeting: a preview

The first UNCG Faculty Senate meeting of the year will be Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015, 3-5 p.m., Virginia Dare Room, Alumni House

Anne Wallace, chair of the Faculty Senate, will offer introductory remarks.

Chancellor-elect Franklin Gilliam Jr. and Acting Chancellor Dana Dunn will offer remarks in the first hour as well.

Committee reports will follow, as well as presentations by Interim Vice Chancellor Jim Thornton; Dana Dunn, Kim Record, Ambrose Jones (NCAA Sanctions); and Dana Dunn and Anne Wallace (Faculty Workload Guidelines).

UNCG Top 3 Safest Campus in NC, says Niche.com

UNCG is ranked in the top 3 in the current Safest Campus in North Carolina rating. The site is published by Niche.com, Inc.

Safest Campus ranks colleges based on crime statistics and opinions from students.

“A high ranking indicates that there is little or no crime on campus and low drug and alcohol usage and students report that the college provides a safe and healthy environment for students,” their site says.

You may read the methodology here.

New LiveSafe app at UNCG

Night photo of UNCG campus with smartphone LiveSafe appAn estimated 2,015 UNCG students, faculty and staff have downloaded and are now using the new UNCG LiveSafe personal security app according to the UNCG police department.

Students are using the app to report various kinds of information including a streetlight not working near Spartan Village, blue lights being out-of-order on emergency phones, and even to report suspected questionable activity on and around campus. The app allows students and member of the campus community to submit tips via text, audio and video attachments.

But by far the app is being used most for its interactive tool called Safewalk. With Safewalk, students, faculty and staff can enable friends or family to track them as they walk on or off campus, through GPS location monitoring.

For more information, visit the UNCG LiveSafe website at livesafe.uncg.edu/FAQ/. It only takes a minute to download the free LiveSafe app from the Apple App Store and from Google Play.

By Joe Gallehugh

National Recovery Month kick-off celebration Sept. 1

Take part in a free event to support National Recovery Month, Sept. 1 in the EUC.

Various departments and programs across UNCG’s campus have united to support National Recovery Month, a part of Mental Health Month. (Details about UNCG’s Mental Health Month activities will be in next week’s CW.)

The Spartan Recovery Program, a new program at UNCG designed to provide recovery support services to students in recovery from addictions to alcohol and/or other drugs, in partnership with the UNCG’s Athletic Department, Choices Program, Institute to Promote Athlete Health and Wellness, Wellness Center, Student Recovery Alliance, and Counseling Center, as well as the Addictions Professionals of North Carolina, will host a Kick­Off Celebration on Sept. 1 from 6:30- 9 p.m. in the Maple Room, EUC.

There is no admission charge. The celebration will begin with light refreshments followed by a screening of the feature documentary “The Anonymous People.” A panel discussion will feature UNCG students, faculty, staff, and administrators.

Also, free Recovery Month T-shirts will be given to the first 100 attendees.

For more information or if you wish to register for the event, visit the event page at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/recovery-month-kick-off-celebration-the-anonymous-people-film-screening-tickets-17823004085.

Registration is not required.

See more at recovery@uncg.edu.

New Name for the Teachers Academy

At the April 2015 meeting of the Teachers Academy Council of Program Coordinators the membership voted to change the name of the Teachers Academy to the Collaborative for Educator Preparation (CEP). The change was made in order to be inclusive of all professional education programs represented by the CEP. The CEP will continue to set policy, oversee assessment and accreditation, and act as a professional learning community for professional education programs across campus. It will continue to be led by the Council of Program Coordinators (CPC).

The CEP (formerly known as Teachers Academy) includes (a) a Council of Program Coordinators (CPC) that represents all professional education programs on the UNCG campus, (b) a Steering Committee that includes representatives from the units on campus, and (c) an Advisory Board consisting of members from the 15 school districts that constitute the Piedmont Triad Educational Consortium (PTEC). The Director of the Teachers Academy is also the Chair of the Council of Program Coordinators and reports to the UNCG dean of the School of Education.

The CEP oversees

  • policies and practices of professional education programs at UNCG;
  • accreditation and DPI reviews in conjunction with the SOE Director of Assessment
  • dissemination of information about North Carolina State Department of Public Instruction (SDPI) licensing requirements; and
  • the administration of school-university partnership activities related to USTEP funding.

Contact Dr. Christina O’Connor, director of the Collaborative for Educator Preparation, at ckoconno@uncg.edu with any questions.

Edge of a new era

Photo of Chancellor-Elect Franklin Gilliam Jr. speaking during his state of the campus addressUNCG is a remarkable institution, uniquely positioned to grow and thrive.

Chancellor-Elect Franklin Gilliam Jr. delivered remarks at the 124th State of the Campus Address Aug. 12, with UNCG faculty, staff and board members assembled in Aycock Auditorium. His first day at UNCG will be Sept. 8.

He spoke of UNCG’s impact on and engagement in the greater community – and what it means for its students and the region and state.

“I will be an advocate for this university and for public higher education in this state,” he said. He noted that most states are now spending less on public higher education per capita than they did in 2008.

The biggest UNCG fundraising challenge is fellowships for students, to ease the burden of debt. He explained that debt burden impacts the career choices for students, and that our state needs many of those careers that are not necessarily the most lucrative, but are essential for our society.

He talked of his first impression of UNCG on his initial visit. “This is a beautiful campus,” he told his wife, Jacquelean Gilliam, as a student showed them the university.

Gilliam shared his thoughts about UNCG’s culture and its future. “Culture refers to a clearly articulated and broadly shared set of values that define the very nature of an organization,” he explained. He stepped from behind the podium to the front of the stage, closer to the audience, and laid out a set of values that builds that culture:

  • Shared fate. “We have a shared fate,” he said. “We have to collaborate.”
  • Excellence. “There has to be a common standard of excellence in everything we do,” he told the faculty and staff gathered.
  • Accountability. “People have to be held accountable. We all do.”.
  • Innovation. “We have to have an entrepreneurial spirit,” he said. “We have to act like we’re a start-up.”
  • Transparency. “That means clarity – about how decisions are made.”
  • Inclusion. “We all have a stake in UNCG,” he explained. Ideas can come from anyone and anywhere, he added. UNCG needs inclusive decision-making and communications.
  • Fun. We’re at college, he said. “We should get joy out of that – the joy in what we accomplish together.”

He alluded to the title of the occasion: the 124th State of the Campus Address, and the permanence of UNCG’s enduring, vital role in the community and state. “We’re not going anywhere. We are here.”

Acting Chancellor and Provost Dana Dunn gave an address on the accomplishments of the past year. She received an extended, rousing ovation, as did Dr. Gilliam.

Trustees Chair Susan Safran offered remarks as well. “I do believe we are on the edge of a new era,” she said.

The traditional luncheon for faculty/staff followed the address, giving many staff and faculty an opportunity to meet their new chancellor.

View video of Chancellor-elect Gilliam’s remarks here.

By Mike Harris
Photo by Martin Kane

Million-hour milestone for UNCG’s service and civic engagement

Photo of UNCG Guarantee student scholars washing windows in the communityUNCG’s Office of Leadership & Service-learning has sharpened its pencils and tallied the university-wide numbers. And UNCG’s students have reached a milestone:

They are now engaging in more than 1 million community service hours annually.

The 1 million hours documented in community service include UNCG students in myriad activities throughout the county on volunteer service days, UNCG student teachers in area public schools or volunteers in after-school youth development, School of Nursing students in a practicum at area hospitals, social work students engaged in field work – the list goes on. The ways in which UNCG students engage in impactful ways in the community and develop into “citizen leaders” are many.

This is the first time UNCG’s Office of Leadership & Service-Learning has tabulated a figure that passes the 1,000,000 mark.

The exact figure is 1,060,829 hours. That is for the 2013-14 academic year, the last year for which all the numbers have been calculated.

The number of students who engaged in academic service-learning – community service through courses – for 2013-14 was 7,029. Examples include the Communication and Society Course in Communication Studies, in which students work with young people in the Boys and Girls Club to organize and implement activities, and a history course in which students work with Preservation Greensboro on a social history of local, historic homes.

Those who otherwise engaged in forms of community service? 4,434.

‘The university is developing ‘citizen leaders,’” says Dr. Cathy Hamilton, director of the UNCG Office of Leadership and Service-Learning (OLSL). “When students come to UNCG for the first time, we want them to understand that even as we welcome them as part of the UNCG community, we stress they are also a vital part of the Greensboro community. Becoming a citizen leader means developing a commitment for the common good and the skills for effecting positive change in society.”

Acting Chancellor Dana Dunn says,“‘Service’ has been this university’s motto since its earliest days. This figure is a remarkable milestone. It speaks to the tremendous impact UNCG makes in our community, through the efforts of thousands of Spartan students working alongside many community partners.”

Although the numbers don’t tell the whole story, gathering the numbers has been something that UNCG has committed to do since the inception of the national Presidential Honor Roll for Community Engagement in 2006. Since that time, OLSL and UNCG’s Institute for Community and Economic Engagement have taken the lead to document community engagement for UNCG’s Carnegie Foundation application for elective Carnegie Classification of Community Engagement. UNCG was awarded this classification in 2008 and again, when it was time for renewal renew, in 2015.

Community service means activities designed to improve the quality of life of off-campus community residents, particularly low income individuals, Hamilton explains. Community service activities may include but are not limited to: academic service-learning, co-curricular service learning (not part of an academic course, but utilizing service-learning elements) and other co-curricular student volunteer activities, as well as Work-Study community service and paid community service internships. Community service includes both direct service to citizens (e.g., serving food to the needy) and indirect service (e.g., assessing community nutrition needs or managing a food bank). Academic service-learning means service that is integrated with academic course content. It may involve direct or indirect service, and may include academic research.

Spartan Service Day will be this Saturday – with Spartans at 15 locations throughout Guilford County. Details are at http://olsl.uncg.edu/students/community-service/short-term-service/spartan-service-day/.

By Mike Harris
Photo by Martin Kane. UNCG Guarantee students volunteered at Barnabas Network last week.

Next week: a look at UNCG OLSL service trips to Hurricane Katrina affected areas in the years after the storm.

UNCG leads Guilford, Brunswick, Yadkin school teachers in China

Photo of teacher showing iPad app to students in ChinaSponsored by a Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad (GPA) grant, UNCG professors led 12 NC public school teachers, including K-12 classroom teachers, English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) teachers, Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs), and special education teachers, on a Chinese educational project this summer. What they learned can enrich their classroom instruction this year and for years to come.

Dr. Ye (Jane) He (School of Education) and Dr. Kristine Lundgren (HHS) served as the directors. They led the dozen teachers from Guilford County, Brunswick County and Yadkin County Schools in China. The program’s base in China was Shanghai Normal University, a UNCG partner university in Shanghai, China.

The teachers learned the Chinese language and culture, and observed in several K-12 schools. They plan to integrate some of the Chinese language and cultural elements in their units in the coming year, Dr. He said.

Dr. He and Dr. Lundgren plan to take a group of UNCG students, teacher candidates, SLPs, and other interested educators and specialists to China next summer.

This is the first time UNCG has secured a Fulbright-Hays GPA grant to lead an overseas experience for school teachers.

Read a blog from a teacher participant: https://sanderlinnshanghai.wordpress.com/.

For more information of the upcoming program to China, contact Dr. Ye (Jane) He at y_he@uncg.edu.

Tara Green: Hurricane Katrina in reality and as metaphor

Photo of Dr. Tara T. GreenThis month marks the tenth anniversary of one of the most devastating storms in U.S. history: Hurricane Katrina.

Dr. Tara T. Green will attend the Katrina 10 Commemorative Conference of the Urban League at the end of this month in New Orleans. The conference will look at the city’s re-emergence and the issues it and other cities hit by Katrina face.

Green, professor & director of the UNCG African American & African Diaspora Studies program, is from the New Orleans area. She attended Dillard University in New Orleans. Most of her family evacuated before the storm hit.

A lot has changed in the city as a result of the storm and the aftermath, and the conference will take a close look at the housing changes, education-related changes, etc., she explained.

Her current research and writing centers around water, both in reality and in metaphor, and African descendents.

The Middle Passage, a term for the slave transport ships’ journey from Africa to the Americas, is one subject of her upcoming book.

New Orleans was a major slave port, she notes.

Hurricane Katrina is another subject of the book.

She speaks of the imagery from Katrina. You have to unpack the imagery, she explains. “It’s a part of the history.”

In the book she ponders the role that the history of racial discrimination had on the response to and treatment of people displaced by the hurricane.

“Katrina is symbolic for our country, a metaphor,” she explains.

By Mike Harris

UNCG hosts 25 German Fulbright students

Group photo of German Fulbright studentsUNCG once again hosted 25 German Fulbright students this summer. 20-25 years old and from schools of applied sciences all over Germany, they learned about American culture and the American high education system. This year’s theme was once again “Entrepreneurship.” They visited many businesses as well as tourist/cultural sites. They marked the end of their UNCG educational adventure at this week’s UNCG German Fulbright Summer Institute 2015 Farewell Dinner and Certificate Ceremony.

This year’s German Fulbright students visited several businesses and organizations and met with leaders in the corporate and academic fields. They visited the International Civil Rights Museum, NC A&T University, High Point University, Piedmont Triad Farmers Market, Museum of the Cherokee Indian, Bald Head Island Conservancy, EUE/Screen Gems Studios, Nussbaum Center for Entrepreneurship, Victory Junction, Research Triangle Park, One Million Cups (1MC), Krispy Kreme corporate office, Tanger Factory Outlet corporate office and Mebane Tanger Outlet Mall.

Other adventures included a night paddle at Lake Brandt, TeamQuest group obstacle challenge session at Piney Lake, a trip to the Nantanhala Outdoor Center, a trip to Carolina Beach and Asheville city center and also some fun examples of American sports culture.

This year’s program marked the fifth year in which UNCG was chosen by the German Fulbright Commission in Berlin to host and run this summer institute. The other institution in the US hosting a group of German Fulbright scholars during this summer was SUNY at Binghamton (Binghamton University).

The office of Senator Thom Tillis is arranging for tours at the Library of Congress and the US Capitol as they depart UNCG.

See a Facebook page with many photos: UNCG German-American Fulbright Summer Institute.

For more information about this program, contact Dr. Penelope Pynes or Nor Othman-LeSaux at the International Programs Center (IPC) at ipc@uncg.edu or 334-5404.

Resources for adults and seniors in community

“Should I Stay or Should I Go?” is an eight-session program exploring topics of interest to adults and seniors in our community.

The sessions will  be 10 a.m. – noon Thursdays, Sept. 17-Nov. 5.

It will be of particular interest to those who are thinking of moving out of their large homes into smaller ones, apartments, condos or assisted living. It is a tough decision after the kids leave home. It will be of interest to their adult children as well.

The sessions will include resources for adults in addition to resources for seniors, such as  financial preparedness,, aquatic and fitness resources, a tour of the Adult Center for Enrichment, and more.

The series is sponsored by Well-Spring, UNCG and SERVE, Inc.

Visit http://www.servecenter.org/collections/frontpage/products/should-i-stay-or-should-i-go to register. The cost is $35.

You may contact Pat Levitin 336-339-2113 with any questions.

Starfish is live for Fall 2015

The Starfish EARLY ALERT and CONNECT technologies are now available to all students, staff and faculty at UNCG for the Fall 2015 term. Starfish is an early warning and student tracking system that allows UNCG to take a holistic approach to student success. Starfish aims to support student success by allowing instructors, faculty, and staff members to track student progress and remain easily connected to one another. Starfish can be accessed through Canvas.

Instructors can raise alert flags related to academic and personal concerns so that students can connect with resources that may help them. Instructors can also raise kudos for students who are performing well academically or who are showing improvement. Academic Status Reports are sent out three times in the semester to allow for quick tracking of many students at once. Instructors will receive email alerts when these reports launch on the following dates:

  • Sept. 8
  • Sept. 29
  • Nov. 3 (sent to instructors of student athletes and specific student cohorts only)

When a student is flagged for academic concerns, they are contacted and invited to meet with a Students First Office (SFO) staff member on the Starfish Outreach Team to help them develop a plan for academic success. All flagged students will also receive outreach from SFO with information about helpful campus resources.

New Features, Updates and Training Opportunities

  • Starfish Referrals: In Spring 2015, UNCG made referral options available in Starfish. The Tutoring Referral and Academic Skills Referral can be raised by faculty and staff to recommend students to academic services that may assist them. Raising a referral will alert the student and support staff within the designated support office.
  • New User Interface: On August 1 Starfish received a makeover.  Faculty, staff and students may now open Starfish and see a new and streamlined dashboard to help with prioritization of appointments and tracking items (flags, kudos, and referrals).
  • Starfish Training for Faculty and Staff: The Students First Office will be hosting training workshops throughout Fall 2015 to help faculty and staff learn how to navigate Starfish features. Workshop details and sign-ups can be accessed at workshops.uncg.edu. Simply search “Starfish Sessions” for a list of available dates and times.

Students, staff and faculty may refer to the Students First Office website for training guides on using Starfish features – studentsfirst.uncg.edu/starfish. Users may also email the Starfish Coordinator, Elena Medeiros, at starfish@uncg.edu for additional clarification or troubleshooting.

General Education Program Assessment Forum

The UNCG General Education Council invites faculty, staff and students to participate in the General Education Program Assessment Forum scheduled to be held in the Faculty Center (on College Avenue) on Wednesday, Aug. 26, from 12:30 to 1:45 p.m. Council members will present and lead discussion of results from the fall 2014 pilot of AAC&U VALUE rubrics used to assess student work in the General Education Program.

The General Education Program provides the foundation for the more specialized knowledge gained in a major.  Because the program belongs to the entire university, everyone’s input is vital to its improvement.

How to get your items on Public Calendar

Image of Public Calendar web pageHow do you get your department’s or program’s events onto the UNCG public calendar?

It seems that practically every department or program has one person responsible for their calendar. If you are that person, here is how you do it:

  • Create a Google calendar for your department or program, if you haven’t already. Have you made your calendar public? Good.
  • Have you gone to the university’s Calendar Directory & Mash-up page to register this public Google calendar? If you have, excellent. You are ready.
  • Each time you input a public event into your departmental or program calendar that you think is appropriate for the UNCG public calendar, invite “calendar@uncg.edu” – which invites the UNCG public calendar. Be sure to check the boxes for ‘Guests can invite others’ and ‘see guest list.’
  • Be sure the event listing has all the basic details a reader would need to know: who, what, when, where – plus any details such as admission prices and where to purchase tickets, any special parking information, etc.
  • The events will filter into the UNCG public calendar, as University Relations verifies each is an event that is open to all. Additionally, University Relations will select several events from that calendar to feed into the UNCG home page “events tab” each day.

Questions? Contact calendar@uncg.edu.

‘Values that build culture,’ in State of Campus Address

Photo of the entrance view of Aycock AuditoriumUNCG is a remarkable institution, uniquely positioned to grow and thrive.

Chancellor-Elect Franklin Gilliam Jr. delivered remarks at the 124th State of the Campus Address August 12, with UNCG faculty, staff and board members assembled in Aycock Auditorium.

He spoke of its impact on and engagement in the greater community – and what it means for its students and the region and state.

“I will be an advocate for this university and for public higher education in this state,” he said. He noted that most states are now spending less on public higher education per capita than they did in 2008.

The biggest UNCG fundraising challenge is fellowships for students, to ease the burden of debt. He explained that debt burden impacts the career choices for students, and that our state needs many of those careers that are not necessarily the most lucrative, but are essential for our society.

He talked of his first impression of UNCG on his initial visit. “This is a beautiful campus,” he told his wife, Jacquelean Gilliam, as a student showed them the university.

Gilliam shared his thoughts about UNCG’s culture and its future. “Culture refers to a clearly articulated and broadly shared set of values that define the very nature of an organization,” he explained. He stepped from behind the podium to the front of the stage, closer to the audience, and laid out a set of values that builds that culture:

  • Shared fate. “We have a shared fate,” he said. “We have to collaborate.”
  • Excellence. “There has to be a common standard of excellence in everything we do,” he told the faculty and staff gathered.
  • Accountability. “People have to be held accountable. We all do.”.
  • Innovation. “We have to have an entrepreneurial spirit,” he said. “We have to act like we’re a start-up.”
  • Transparency. “That means clarity – about how decisions are made.”
  • Inclusion. “We all have a stake in UNCG,” he explained. Ideas can come from anyone and anywhere, he added. UNCG needs inclusive decision-making and communications.
  • Fun. We’re at college, he said. “We should get joy out of that – the joy in what we accomplish together.

He alluded to the title of the occasion: the 124th State of the Campus Address, and the permanence of our enduring, vital role in the community and state. “We’re not going anywhere. We are here.”

Acting Chancellor and Provost Dana Dunn gave an address on the accomplishments of the past year. She received an extended, rousing ovation, as did Dr. Gilliam.

Trustees Chair Susan Safran offered remarks as well. “I do believe we are on the edge of a new era,” she said.

By Mike Harris (Posted 1:35 p.m.)


Earlier copy on this post:

Acting Chancellor Dunn and Chancellor Elect Gilliam request your attendance at the State of the Campus address today (Aug. 12) at Aycock Auditorium. The event begins at 10:30 a.m.

A luncheon will immediately follow, at Moran Commons and Plaza.

The event will be live streamed at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/uncg-university-relations.

Note: Check back at this web page later today for a full report.

Disaster: 10 years ago, Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf

Aerial view of the damage Hurricane Katrina caused. This month marks a horrible anniversary. Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans and the Gulf Coast on August 29, 2005. In recognition of the ruin the hurricane precipitated, The World Meteorological Organization retired the moniker “Katrina,” never to be used again for a storm.

In late August of that year UNCG Sociology professor Dr. Steve Kroll-Smith knew he had to do something. He had been a research professor at the University of New Orleans from 1992 to 2000. His daughter was born there.

As he watched the coverage of the storm and aftermath a decade ago, from the safety of Greensboro, he wanted to be involved. One of his research specialties was disasters.

An emeritus professor from Yale, Kai Erikson, called and said. “Let’s do something.” They joined many faculty members from around the country in New Orleans.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation granted him and two professors from the University of New Orleans $150,000 to look at the long-term impacts of the flooding on two New Orleans neighborhoods, Pontchartrain Park and Hollygrove.

Kroll-Smith and two New Orleans professors professors, Vern Baxter and Pam Jenkins, have just released the results of their 2005-2011 longitudinal study. The book, “Left to Chance: Hurricane Katrina and the Story of Two New Orleans Neighborhoods,” was published by University of Texas Press.

The book examines two African-American neighborhoods wiped out by flooding after the hurricane passed. “As they remind us, our daily life is ‘geographically ordered,’ and they chronicle the disorientation people faced during evacuation, exile and return,” says a review report in The New Orleans Advocate.

Pontchartrain Park is professional and middle-class. Hollygrove is working class. Their research revealed that class difference in these communities mattered. The poorer people had less access to resources and information, often resulting in delays in accessing disaster relief. On the other hand, many of the blue collar Hollygrove residents possessed skills their counterparts in Pontchartrain Park lacked. With their do-it-yourself capability, including electrical repairs, plumbing work, roofing, and so on, many got their houses back in working order more quickly than the residents of, what locals call, “The Park.”

Kroll-Smith and his colleagues noted early on in their work that the term “disaster recovery” could not bear the weight of what they were seeing in both neighborhoods. Recovery is a palliative expression to make you feel better – “as if we recover from disaster,” he says.

The infrastructure did recover. Housing and businesses were rebuilt, for example. But does a person who lives through the total ruin that was Hurricane Katrina recover, existentially? No.

“They did not recover. They changed. They were transformed.” Some had emotional troubles. Some moved away. Some perished. No one they followed over the years returned to a pre-Katrina way of being in the world.

While a lot of the city flooded, the more significant stressor was the actual, official recovery effort, he says. “It was so misshapen; the recovery itself was a disaster.”

He noted in particular five public housing complexes. When the city flooded, all the residents were forced to move out of the complexes, in spite of the fact that only one was damaged by the flood, he says. Residents were given money for one-way tickets out of town; no money was provided for a return trip, he adds; the historic, solid brick housing units were subsequently torn down.

The African-American footprint in New Orleans is now much smaller than before Katrina, he further adds.

Carol Stack, emeritus professor, University of California, Berkeley writes, “This book is important, beautifully written, deeply philosophical and literary. Tragedy and daring and unforgiving social policies are transmitted through the narratives and speak to the reader as if we were there….”

The New York Times Review of Books reviewed it in Sunday’s edition.

A string of UNCG graduate and undergraduate students have worked on this research project with him over the past several years.

Kroll-Smith is currently working on a comparative study of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire and the 2005 flooding of New Orleans. Tentatively titled “A Tale of Two American Cities,” The University of Texas Press will publish this study as well.

Next week: additional UNCG connections with the devastating Hurricane Katrina and aftermath.

By Mike Harris
Photo by U.S. Navy.

‘Soundtrack to Grogan’ back in rightful spot

Photo of Tim Babb and Slim Briggs (in baseball cap) of Feeny Piano installing the piano in Grogan.It’s back. And the Baldwin Model F baby grand piano sounds better than ever.

About 60 or 70 UNCG School of Music, Theatre and Dance students participate in Grogan College each year. They – and lots of other Grogan students – give the baby grand a musical workout year after year. The building underwent renovation last year – and the piano was put in storage.

John Sopper was on hand as Feeny Piano employees delivered it last Wednesday morning. They gently wheeled it into the new built additional space on the Grogan first floor, reassembled the legs, placing the newly tuned piano in the designated corner.

Sopper, director of UNCG’s Grogan Residential College 2000-09 and now returning as Faculty Program Chair for the college, recalled how the piano came to find its home in Grogan.

“This began as the piano in the old Dining Hall, in the late ‘90s I believe. It’s the very piano we’re seeing.” That part of the dining hall was called Spencer’s, he explains. A 2013 Grogan News report on Charles Angel, piano technician in SMTD, recently repairing the Grogan piano noted that it was first purchased by the School of Music in 1965 but was surplused in 1999, going to Spencer’s.

The dining hall underwent a full renovation. Grogan accepted the piano in early fall 2006, Sopper recalls.

“We had a Grand Piano Welcome Celebration.”

“John Deal (former Music dean) came over. Andrew Willis (professor of piano) gave a talk on the history of the modern piano, and there was a concert by some students. We had a great cake in the shape of a piano.”

It’s been a musical fixture in Grogan ever since. “The grand piano is the soundtrack of Grogan,” Meg Horton (Biology) has often said. Horton served several years as director of Grogan.

The students have made it their own. “It gets played constantly,” Sopper says. “The School of Music, Theatre and Dance students love it! They give performances. Antonio Truyols played it all the time.”

The building features two electronic pianos as well.

Most of the first-year students in the Grogan building this year are members of Grogan Residential College, one of three residential colleges on campus. Grogan College draws majors in the School of Music, Theatre and Dance, the Bryan School of Business and Economics, the School of Education, the School of Health and Human Sciences, and the School of Nursing, plus those who have interest in pre-med, pre-vet, pre-pharmacy or pre-dentistry. Sopper believes its robust academic and co-curricular program specifically for students in the performing arts is why the college was contacted as a potentially good home for this grand piano.

Sopper sat down to play a few scales, after the piano was assembled. He turned to H&RL project manager Lindsay Burkart, who directed the piano move. “This is definitely the residence hall to be in, don’t you think?”

It’s bound to be the best-sounding one.

Grogan College presents a showcase and social event each fall called “Grogan Night of the Arts.” SMTD students lead it, but everyone gets into the act. Watch the Grogan web site for an announcement of the date. Alumni, faculty, staff – everyone is welcome to help celebrate the talent and hard work of these students.

And if you’re in Grogan and the piano is not being used, feel free to tickle the keys or play a little Mozart. You’re joining in a long history of music lovers doing the same. It’s a “Grogan family” tradition.

By Mike Harris
Photo by Martin Kane, Aug. 7, as Tim Babb and Slim Briggs (in baseball cap) of Feeny Piano place the piano in Grogan.

See earlier story on the building renovation.
See more about the Grogan and other UNCG residential colleges.

Nominate students for Spartans of Promise

Know a graduating senior who’s an excellent scholar and dedicated to service?

The Spartans of Promise is an annual award recognizing UNCG seniors who have demonstrated exceptional academic and service accomplishments. Supported each year by the 50th Reunion class and the UNCG Alumni Association, it creates a unique connection between our newest generation of alumni and the members of the Vanguard. Up to ten seniors are honored each year. As Spartans of Promise, the award recipients will be recognized at the Alumni of Distinction Award Dinner and invited to participate in UNCG Alumni Association events throughout the year.

Spartans of Promise must demonstrate:

  • Strong involvement in campus activities
  • Proven leadership in service activities
  • Passion for UNCG
  • Qualifications:
  • A minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Completion of 90 credit hours, at least 30 of which are completed at UNCG

Faculty, staff and advisers for student groups are encouraged to recommend a student who they think should be considered for the award, by sending the student’s name to Mary Swantek at m_swante@uncg.edu. The deadline for faculty and staff to submit their recommendations is Aug. 18, 2015.

Emails will be sent to all recommended students,, notifying them that they have been recommended and that they are strongly encouraged to complete the Spartans of Promise Application Form.

For more information about the Spartans of Promise awards, visit alumnistories.uncg.edu/about-us/alumni-awards/spartans-of-promise.