Campus

New BGSU labor agreement gets thumbs up

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The new contract between Bowling Green State University and its faculty union prompted a thumbs up from the chair of the board of trustees and a presidential hug. The trustees approved a three-year contract with the BGSU Faculty Association Friday. This is the second contract between the two sides. This one took months to reach as opposed to years in the first collective bargaining agreement. After signing the contract Board Chair David Levey gave the pact two thumbs up as President Mary Ellen Mazey and Faculty Association President David Jackson hugged Speaking to the board, Allen Rogel, who chairs the Faculty Senate, said that “the environment now compared with three years ago is much better.” The faculty union approved the deal with a 95-percent affirmative vote. “I don’t know anywhere anyone gets 95 percent assent,” said Levey. The contract takes effect on July 1. The contract calls for 3-percent pay increases each year. The contract also includes provisions to give greater security for non-tenure track faculty as well as incentives for faculty who bring external grants to the university. The trustees also took two actions related to provisions in the new contract. They made domestic partners ineligible for coverage under university employees’ health plan. Because of the legality of gay marriage, this provision is no longer needed and equalizes coverage between gay and heterosexual employees. Otherwise, the contract calls for no changes in faculty health benefits. Also the board approved a small adjustment in the cost of faculty parking permits, which will rise $5 in each of the next three years, topping out at…


College of Education honors Dr. G for her student-centered theater education

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Matt Webb knew of Jo Beth Gonzalez’s teaching mostly through his daughters’ experience in theater at Bowling Green High School. Katie is a high school junior who is in the improv troupe and in one acts, and the other, Liz, is a college junior who danced in the musicals. As students involved in theater they worked closely with Dr. G, who has taught theater at the school for 22 years. Neither girl, their father said, is a star, but both felt the drama teacher had a positive influence on them. His younger daughter told him that Dr. G was always preparing them for life. So when, in his role as the director of student and academic services in the Bowling Green State University College of Education and Human Development, Webb received an email asking for nominations for the college’s Educator of the Year award, he decided to submit her name. First he reached out to Gonzalez and asked for her curriculum vitae.  He learned the details, about the ground-breaking productions, the award-winning shows, two books. “I realized how stellar she is.” This week Gonzalez received the honor given to outstanding alumni and gave the keynote address to about 350 graduates of the college during their Capstone Day activities. As nominee, Gonzalez had to go through an interview process, almost like getting hired for a job. “It was a little nerve wracking,” she said in a recent interview. And she had to respond to a question, she hadn’t prepared for: What is the greatest challenge facing the nation and how does she address it in…


Mary Toth brings It’s On Us message to VP Joe Biden

By ALEX SOLIS/BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS At university and college campuses, sexual assault is a serious problem. It’s On Us, a national movement championing prevention and awareness, has one goal – to stop campus sexual assaults. Senior Mary Toth got involved in the student-led initiative to help improve the culture at BGSU. In fall 2015, she was chosen as one of 17 students nationally to serve on the inaugural It’s On Us Student Advisory Committee, which provides campus student leaders an opportunity to make a larger impact. As her committee term comes to an end, she traveled to the White House to meet Vice President Joe Biden. “It’s On Us has a powerful message. All institutions and individuals must continue to address this issue to make progress,” Toth said. “BGSU is lucky to have such tremendous support from President Mary Ellen Mazey, faculty and staff.” Toth pushes for more opportunities for education, awareness and prevention. Her personal story shows that sexual assault is not just a statistic, but is negatively impacting people across the country. “There is always a need to be more proactive,” Toth said. “Campuses need to create a supportive and safe environment for all.” Given the enormity of this issue, change does not come easy. Toth works with fellow survivors and advocates on a variety of initiatives to combat sexual assault at BGSU and on the national committee. “Students need to stand up. Action produces an equal impact as philanthropy,” she said. In Washington, D.C., Toth met with the other 16 students on the national committee; her mentor, Kristin Avery, director of the It’s On…


Pianist Cole Burger to perform in Malaysia

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Dr. Cole Burger has gone to Southeast Asia for a few weeks each of the last two years, even traveling to Thailand unknowingly in the midst of a coup-albeit a “very peaceful” one-in 2014. But the trip he will take this May, back to Malaysia for a third time, will be a little different. The instructor of piano in the College of Musical Arts will teach piano and present recitals and master classes at the University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur as a Fulbright Specialist. Part of the U.S. State Department’s prestigious Fulbright Scholar Program, the specialist program promotes short-term collaborative projects linking American scholars with counterparts at host institutions in more than 140 countries. While he has also been in Cambodia and Indonesia, as well as in Thailand, recently, Malaysia was his desired destination because English is spoken “relatively well” there, plus roads and other infrastructure are better, he said. In addition, about 10 percent of Malaysia’s population is ethnic Chinese and, in a colleague’s words, “it seems like half of the Chinese population wants to be a classical pianist,” Burger related. So, he added, while many Chinese students are studying Western music, the Chinese don’t have the history of teaching it that the U.S. does, offering an opportunity. “We have a chance to share what it means to teach and learn classical piano music,” said Burger, whose international trips to teach and perform have also included one to China, in 2007, and five to Europe. To go abroad, and to welcome international students to BGSU and elsewhere in America, and help…


Community ride promotes need for improvements for bicyclists

  By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Thursday’s community bike ride is more than a pedal to the park. The organizers have some serious points to make about the need to make Bowling Green a better place for bicycling.               The second Community Ride will begin Thursday at 5 p.m. at the fountain in front of the Administration Building on the Bowling Green State University campus.  The riders will head west toward downtown, traveling eventually to Main Street, before reaching their destination, the green space at the corner of Church and West Wooster streets. The first ride came after Lily Murnen, president of the Environmental Service Club, was talking to Rick Busselle, a BGSU faculty member and bicyclist. Busselle was upset by a couple incidents. A student was struck while bicycling near the CVS on East Wooster Street, and then was ticketed for riding on the sidewalk. Busselle himself took a spill while trying to navigate past that spot. His accident occurred in part because he was unsure at what point cyclists were allowed to ride on sidewalks. The city lacks both clarity in the rules governing bicyclists and the bike lanes needed to make riding in the city safer, he said. Yet, the city officials didn’t really seem to think it was a problem. He and Murnen discussed a mass bike riding event. These can involve a large group of bicyclists taking over the streets and, at times, violating traffic laws. Instead they decided that it would be best to have the bicyclists adhere to the rules of the road, which in some…


Falcons hatch in courthouse clock tower

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Bowling Green welcomed its newest falcons to town early Sunday morning at a time when most students are preparing to leave campus after final exams. Three of four peregrine falcon eggs hatched Sunday, with the first view of a hatched egg around 3 a.m. on the Falcon Cam, www.bgsu.edu/falconcam, provided by a partnership between the Wood County Commissioners and Bowling Green State University. “The falcons continue to be a source of wonder for people in the courthouse, whether they’re employees or citizens visiting the courthouse,” said Andrew Kalmar, Wood County administrator. “Because the falcons chose us we get to enjoy them, and that’s been really nice over the past six years.” Of course the peregrine falcon is BGSU’s official mascot. A pair of the raptors took refuge in the clock tower — just two blocks west of campus —six years ago. “We’re happy they’ve made a habit of calling Bowling Green home,” said Dave Kielmeyer, chief marketing and communications officer of BGSU. “It’s fitting that the falcons have bonded with the town and University.” The first egg was laid March 22, and there’s typically a 33-day gestation period. The last egg is expected to hatch soon. For more information about the peregrine falcons in the courthouse clock tower, go to bgsu.edu/falconcam.html.


Lisa Hanasono honored statewide & at BGSU for her work promoting diversity

From BG OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Dr. Lisa Hanasono’s work is founded in the integration of research and teaching and lived out in her commitment to the community. In recognition of her engagement of students with such important issues as promoting unity, diversity and inclusion, Hanasono, an assistant professor of communication, received a 2016 David Hoch Memorial Award for Excellence in Service. The award was presented by Ohio Campus Compact, a nonprofit membership organization of 41 Ohio colleges and universities working to promote and develop the civic purposes of higher education. The Hoch award honors the outstanding work in service-learning and/or civic engagement by a faculty or staff member at an Ohio Campus Compact member institution. In addition to the Hoch award, Hanasono has also been selected to receive the College of Arts and Sciences Diversity Award for 2016, again in recognition of her putting into practice her research and pedagogical interests in diversity and inclusivity. Collectively, Hanasono’s teaching, research and service activities work together to strategically develop, deliver and evaluate the effectiveness of community engagement projects and initiatives that advance diversity at BGSU and beyond. Drawing from her research expertise on discrimination, advocacy and social support, she worked with community partners and students to design, launch and assess BG4Unity, a community-based service-learning project. BG4Unity encourages people to use social media responsibly to advocate against hate and engage in community building. Undergraduate students enrolled in Hanasono’s Persuasion courses partnered with local organizations and applied course concepts to raise community members’ awareness about the prevalence and danger of cyberbullying and online discrimination, motivate people to join BG4Unity to demonstrate their…


BGSU set to graduate 2,287 Friday & Saturday

By BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS The University will celebrate its 285th graduation in three ceremonies in the Stroh Center Friday (May 6) and Saturday (May 7). Commencement for the Graduate College and the colleges of Health and Human Services; Musical Arts; and Technology, Architecture and Applied Engineering will be held at 7 p.m. Friday. The College of Arts and Sciences will hold commencement at 9 a.m. Saturday. The colleges of Business Administration and Education and Human Development will hold commencement at 2 p.m. Saturday. BGSU Firelands will hold commencement at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. The May graduating class includes 2,287 candidates. Among the undergraduates, 76 will be presented associate degrees and 1,768 bachelor’s degrees. Of those, 611 have received honors for their high grade point averages. The 424 graduate students include 404 candidates for master’s degrees and 20 for doctoral degrees. BGSU students come from all around the world. This graduating class includes 88 international students representing 25 countries. There is also great diversity in overall age, with degree candidates ranging from 19 to 60. Addressing the Friday graduates will be BGSU alumnus Dean Bresciani, who received a Master of Arts degree in college student personnel in 1985 and is now North Dakota State University’s 14th president. He has more than 30 years in higher education and has developed a broad leadership base in the academic, administrative and political science aspects of university leadership. During the Saturday morning service, the University will present an honorary Doctor of Business Administration degree to Maribeth Rahe. The 1970 alumna is the president and chief executive officer of Fort Washington Investments Advisors Inc.,…


Protest: Too many students don’t feel safe on campus & downtown

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The social media reaction after an alleged assault on campus this weekend literally added insult to injury. About 70 students gather Friday at noon to protest what many believe was an anti-gay act, and the social media outburst of homophobic and sexist comments that followed. For Luna, a BGSU student who uses one name, this “exposed the attitudes that people really have.” Those are “very unwelcoming, very uncomfortable.” Luna told those people assembled in the University Oval that: “Here on Bowling Green campus there’s been a severe lack of acceptance, tolerance and civility. … We learn to navigate a world that would rather erase us, but we shouldn’t have to. We as a community need to hold each other accountable. If we begin to hold each other accountable, we can begin to move toward true acceptance, true tolerance because everyone deserves to feel safe on this campus. Everyone deserves to feel safe downtown. … No one should feel unsafe in their own home.” The incident reportedly happened in the early morning hours Saturday. It was first mentioned on the Twitter account BG Crushes, and said four members of a fraternity had attacked a person believed to be gay. However, nothing was reported to neither city nor campus police. Instead the rumor mill began to churn, and the vicious commentary erupted. The university’s dean of students issued a statement saying the university was seeking any information on the assault. BGSU Police Chief Monica Moll was on the scene of Friday’s protest to try to find out what she could. The Bowling Green City Police are…


BGSU Student Recreation Center recognized as outstanding by national association

By BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS When the Student Recreation Center reopened on Aug. 14, 2014, after a year of renovations, students were delighted with the fresh new spaces, sunny lobby, new equipment and additional facilities. Now the building has been recognized with the National Intramural Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) Outstanding Sports Facilities Award. The award was presented jointly to BGSU Recreation and Wellness and Toledo architects The Collaborative Inc. at the NIRSA Annual Conference and Recreational Sports Expo in Kissimmee, Fla., earlier this month. The NIRSA Outstanding Sports Facilities Awards recognize the innovative designs of new, renovated or expanded collegiate recreational facilities of NIRSA member institutions. Increasingly, research is linking robust recreational programs, facilities and services with student success and satisfaction in higher education. State-of-the art facilities have demonstrated their capacity to greatly enhance the overall student experience, thereby boosting recruitment and improving retention. The annual awards honor facilities that demonstrate excellence in a number of critical areas, including architectural design, functionality and how well the facility meets its intended purpose. Winning facilities exemplify the institution’s commitment to providing the higher education experience desired and valued by students and are considered a standard by which other collegiate recreational facilities should be measured, and from which others can benefit. BGSU’s Recreation Center is featured on the NIRSA website. Students and community members alike are benefiting as a result of the $14.8 million renovation, which was guided in part by their input. In addition to the facility award, BGSU took two, third-place NIRSA awards, in the Student Digital Publication and the Website Design categories. Preparations for the renovation of the…


Director of Forensic Science Center at BGSU, Jon Sprague, gets good government award

By BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Dr. Jon Sprague, director of the Ohio Attorney General’s Center for the Future of Forensic Science at BGSU, received the 2016 Good Government Award from the Ohio Pharmacists Association. The award honors pharmacists who have produced major contributions to the public through government and/or legislative service/education at the local, state or national level. A BGSU faculty member and administrator recently earned the 2016 Good Government Award from the Ohio Pharmacists Association (OPA). Dr. Jon Sprague, director of the Ohio Attorney General’s Center for the Future of Forensic Science at Bowling Green State University, received the award during the OPA 138th annual conference held April 15-17 in Columbus. The award honors pharmacists who have produced major contributions to the public through government and/or legislative service/education at the local, state or national level. Sprague, who is also the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) Eminent Scholar, has had a critical role in reducing abuse of synthetic drugs by helping to write both state and federal laws on the topic. He began to assist the Ohio Attorney General’s Office in developing rules and laws in an attempt to stay ahead of the clandestine laboratories developing synthetic designer drugs (e.g., bath salts and spices). These efforts have resulted in the enactment of Ohio Administrative Code 4729-11-02 assisting law enforcement based on drug pharmacophores, slight variations in the chemical structures of the drugs that produce the same desired effect. Subsequently, this rule is commonly referred to as the “Pharmacophore Rule.” The language he devised allows the law to flexibly cover various synthetic drugs that are created. Sprague obtained…


Kappa Sigma marks return to campus with camp out to aid Wounded Warrior Project

Kappa Sigma wants to reintroduce itself on campus, so the brothers this week are braving rain and wind to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project. Kappa Sigma had a chapter on campus until 2013, when code of conduct violations forced it to close. Now, said Isaiah Vazquez, the public relations director for the chapter, they are seeking a second chance. Organization started last fall, and this campout for wounded veterans is their first philanthropic effort. “We’re hoping to bring the name back,” he said. The chapter will promote the ideals of leadership, service to the community and helping others. Vazquez said the group decided to support the Wounded Warrior Project despite recent allegations of the misappropriation of funds. Vazquez said those responsible have been fired. “Now the money’s going into the right pockets.” The fraternity has supported the Wounded Warriors Project in the past. Many of the fraternity’s alumni have served in the military, and a recent pledge has enlisted. Vazquez said that in a way both the fraternity and the charity have taken “similar routes” to try to make up for mistakes. Kappa Sigma, which will get its charter later this year, will have a 12-member house in the new Greek Housing complex, now nearing completion on campus. He said the prospect of living in the new housing is “incredibly exciting.” He expects the new residence will help the chapter with recruitment. The fundraising effort will continue through today at 11:30 p.m. and resume Friday from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. The brothers, who have a tent set up on the Union Oval, had planned to sleep out…


BGSU looking for evidence of weekend incident

The Bowling Green State University Dean of Students has issued a statement about an incident that may have occurred over the weekend. The statement from Jodi Webb reads: “There have been numerous posts on social media in recent days about a fight or assault involving students that may have occurred over the weekend. Neither Bowling Green Police or BGSU Police have received a report about the incident. “We are committed to providing a safe environment for all of our students. Incidents like this will not be tolerated. BGSU will support anyone who may have been harmed. Any students involved may also be held accountable under the Student Code of Conduct. Anyone with information is encouraged to come forward and contact the Office of the Dean of Students at 419-372-2843 or file an incident report. “Respecting one another and fostering diversity and a culture of inclusion is a core value at Bowling Green State University. Let’s all work together to live up to our values.”


Faculty Senate approves new social work program with old twist

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Bowling Green State University may become the first university in the country to offer a Master of Social Work with a concentration in Gerontology. The Faculty Senate Tuesday approved the new major. Final approval will be up to the university’s Board of Trustees. The trustees will meet the end of next week. Derek Mason, program coordinator for social work in the College of Health and Human Services, said that recent changes in the accreditation requirements by the Council of Social Work Education has made such specializations possible. The new major is a good fit for BGSU given its current programs in gerontology. Mason said that the college did a needs survey and found that over the next few decades there will be a growing demand for caregivers for the elderly. By 2030, he said, 25 percent of the population in Northwest Ohio will be over the age of 60. As proposed this would be the first MSW “with such a focus and depth of specialization,” Mason said. The program will be designed as a 60-credit-hour program though students with a Bachelor in Social Work will be able to complete the degree in 30 credit hours. The degree will also require 1,000 hours of field internship. The plan is to enroll 20 full-time students and five part-time students each year. At least five courses, especially those focusing on aging issues related to specific ethnic groups, will be offered online. Mason said that the web-centric designation can be misleading. In order to have a blended program with at least one online offering that’s what the program…


Survey shows most oppose concealed carry on BGSU campus (Updated 4/27/16)

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Most people surveyed at Bowling Green State University oppose allowing concealed carry of weapons on campus. Of more than 5,700 faculty, staff, administrators and students surveyed, 61.4 opposed allowing concealed carry and 38.6 were in favor.  The survey was done by a committee charged with studying the issue after the State House voted to loosen the restrictions on concealed carry on college campus and other currently restricted zones. The bill, House Bill 48, is still before the State Senate. If it became law, the university trustees would have to approve allowing concealed carry on campus. The committee also found a majority would not feel safer if anyone, including students 21 and older, could carry concealed weapons on campus. That was especially true of women, of whom 74.6 percent said they’d feel less safe, and faculty members, 88 percent of whom would feel less safe. Having concealed carry found greatest support among undergraduate males, 42.7 percent of whom said they would consider carrying a weapon if allowed. Alfred DeMaris, a sociology professor and statistician, said the committee made an effort to reach out to all segments of the campus community. The committee distributed 20,338 surveys, and got 5,792 back, a 28.5 percent response rate. While the committee hoped for more, he noted that this was not a target sample, but the entire target population. Graduate students had the best response rate of almost 70 percent, followed by faculty with just shy of 50 percent. Undergraduates had the lowest response rate, under 20 percent. The committee, which was charged to studying the issue and any possible…