Campus

BGSU is a step ahead in new state policing initiative

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The Bowling Green State University Police Department has become the first in Wood County, and one of the first in the area, to be certified for meeting new standards promulgated by the Ohio Collaborative Community-Police Advisory Board. The department which had gotten provisional certification received its full certification after a recent site visit by the chief of the Coldwater police. BGSU Police Chief Monica Moll said the new initiative was established to set best practices in police interactions with citizens. The program, she said, is voluntary. All those who receive certification will be listed by the state. Most departments will want to make that list, Moll said. Each year two standards will be added that departments have to meet. This year the standards address equal opportunity in recruitment and hiring and policies on the use of force. Moll said that her force had a leg up since it had just completed its Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies paperwork, which she described as “the gold standard” for law enforcement accreditation. The Bowling Green City Police Department also has CALEA accreditation, she said. The CALEA standards align with the best practices advocated by the Ohio Collaborative. BGSU officers have to report any time they use force even if it’s only applying a wristlock. Every one of those reports, Moll said, is reviewed. The department also conducts an annual review of its use of force. BGSU officers seldom use force, and it’s a low level of force, maybe tackling someone who is attempting to flee. “We do a lot of training on de-escalation,” she said. Officers must also report whenever they draw their weapons. Officers working the midnight shift are more likely to use force, Moll said. The standards also cover more severe uses of force, including using deadly force. That policy is guided by Constitutional guarantees and Supreme Court rulings. Officers can only use deadly force if their lives or the lives of others are threatened. In addition, the BGSU department has policies pertaining to mental health calls. Officers receive 40 hours of training a year on alternatives to the use of force or arrest when dealing with a person suffering a mental health crisis. The hiring standards require that the department spell out its procedures and standards ahead of time, so they are not change during the hiring process and that all communication to applicants is the same. Departments have until March, 2017 to be certified in the first round. Standards on the use of body cameras and…


Drought conditions may restrict growth of algae in Lake Erie

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Dry weather is keeping the algae blooms in Lake Erie at bay. The lack of rainfall means little run off into the Maumee River leading into the lake. The runoff is the main source of phosphorus that feeds the algae growth. The phosphorus in the runoff largely comes from the fertilizer that farmers use on their fields. Thursday the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issued a prediction for a less severe algae bloom in the western Lake Erie Basin. On hand at the announcement were Bowling Green State University researchers Michael McKay, director of the BGSU marine program, and George Bullerjahn, professor of biological sciences. That prediction, they said during an interview on Friday, is good as it stands, but is subject to change. If it starts pouring, Bullerjahn said, the algae could be back. “We’re relying on luck and nature,” McKay said. Whether an algae bloom develops into a toxic algae bloom like the one that closed down the Toledo region’s water system in 2014 depends on many factors – wind, heat and the presence of nitrogen, another key ingredient in fertilizer. The extent of that algae bloom, Bullerjahn said, was moderate, but it had high levels of the toxin microcystin. That crisis sent people in the region scrambling for water and scientists, officials and politicians scrambling for solutions. However, “we can’t predict how toxic a bloom will be,” Bullerjahn said. There’s no correlation between how green a bloom is and how toxic it is. Earlier this year a toxic bloom occurred in the Maumee River near Defiance, forcing that city to resort to its back up reservoir for water. As a result of the 2014 crisis, a goal was set last year to reduce phosphorus in the lake by 40 percent. “There’s growing agreement this will bring blooms to a manageable level,” Bullerjahn said. He said scientists are optimistic the goal can be reached. Certainly there will be some hardship, he said, “but nobody’s going crazy.” It will take time. “Don’t expect this to be reached soon,” McKay said. McKay said a first step is to identify “hot spots” where a large amount of phosphorus is being released. In those areas farmers can apply the fertilizer underneath the surface of the field mitigating the run off. Also, a return to the old practice of planting winter cover crops such as rye would help since those crops would absorb more of the nutrients in the soil. Also, farmers can leave more buffer areas between fields and streams and…


BGSU’s Torelli discusses citizen science in Washington D.C.

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS BGSU chemist Dr. Andrew Torelli is part of an international effort to raise awareness of the importance of science to society and to engage the public and legislators with current issues. Torelli recently served on an invited panel of experts as part of an informational briefing for members of Congress, their representatives and the public in Washington, D.C. The panel’s topic was “Citizen Science: Empowering a Robust National Effort.” Torelli shared the exciting example of the Smartphone InSpector, a device developed by an interdisciplinary team of BGSU faculty and students that equips a cell phone to identify and measure contaminants in water and upload the data to an online site. The system is being field tested by a number of area Rotary clubs to monitor regional water quality. The June 7 briefing was part of the American Chemical Society (ACS) Science and the Congress Project and the Consortium for Science Policy Outcomes at Arizona State University. “The purpose of these briefings is to provide members of the public and legislators on Capitol Hill with information on important topics in science that address national challenges,” Torelli said. The panel was moderated by Dr. Jamie Vernon of Sigma Xi and American Scientist magazine, with honorary co-hosts Sens. Steve Daines (Rep. Mont.), and Chris Coons (Dem., Del.). “It was great to see bipartisan support for the briefing,” Torelli said. The importance of citizen science is becoming clearer. According to the ACS, “As professional scientists explore the universe, they find instances and places where more hands, eyes, and voices are needed to collect, analyze, and report data.” The panel discussed “how various citizens are enhancing the nation’s scientific enterprise as well as ensuring that the government maximizes its benefits while avoiding any negative impact on the progress of science.” Since it can be used by ordinary citizens, BGSU’s Smartphone InSpector is a perfect example of how anyone, not only scientists, can contribute to the body of knowledge on the increasingly important question of water quality. Also on the ACS panel were Dr. Darlene Cavalier of Arizona State University, who created SciStarter, a site connecting people to citizen-science projects and other citizen-scientists; Dr. Sophia Liu, an innovation specialist with the United States Geological Survey who facilitates citizen scientists’ participation in such efforts as “Did You Feel It?” earthquake monitoring; and Dr. David Rabkin, vice president for strategic partnership, innovation and sustainability at the Museum of Science in Boston, which has been working at the intersection of citizen science, scientific research and relevant policy…


Registration for inaugural Optimal Aging Community Fair underway

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Registration is now underway for Bowling Green State University’s inaugural Optimal Aging Community Fair. The fair, which will be held Aug. 1, will include an international keynote speaker who will focus on active aging, plus panel discussions, interactive breakout sessions and health screenings, all emphasizing the seven dimensions of wellness: physical, emotional, intellectual, social, spiritual, cultural and occupational. Colin Milner, chief executive officer of the International Council on Active Aging and founder of the active-aging industry in North America, will serve as the keynote speaker. Recognized by the World Economic Forum as one of “the most innovative and influential minds” in the world on aging-related topics, he will discuss the seven dimensions of wellness and the nine principles of active aging. The fair will also include remarks from Dr. Marie Huff, dean of the College of Health and Human Services; Kathy Golovan of Medical Mutual of Ohio; and Paula Davis, project administrator for the Optimal Aging Institute; a panel presentation on trends in aging and caregiving and personal stories of resiliency moderated by Denise Niese, Angie Bradford and Danielle Brogley from the Wood County Committee on Aging. The afternoon will offer a variety of breakout sessions where participants can experience the seven dimensions of wellness through fun, engaging and educational programs and activities. Session topics include: Introduction to Mindfulness, Navigating Insurance Options, Aging in Place, Understanding Trusts and Wills, Preventing Scams, Zumba for Seniors and Using Technology to Stay in Touch and Make New Friends. Ongoing activities include exhibitors, health assessments, yoga, listening post for caregivers, home assessments and more. The fair, which will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union, is free for people 60 and older and BGSU employees and students. The cost is $20 for other attendees; lunch is included. The fair requires advance registration online at www.bgsu.edu/oai. The event is one of Davis’ first duties as project administrator of the newly created Optimal Aging Institute. Davis was previously the director of corporate and foundation relations at BGSU. She came to BGSU from Ithaca College where she served as both the assistant director and outreach coordinator of the Ithaca College Gerontology Institute. The Optimal Aging Institute in the College of Health and Human Services provides learning opportunities and educational materials for service providers, health systems, entrepreneurs, corporations, caregivers and older adults. The institute was developed with the help of a $1 million contribution from Medical Mutual of Ohio. Guests with disabilities are requested to indicate if they need special…


BGSU lacrosse honored at sport’s national home

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Mickey Cochrane, retired Bowling Green State University professor and coach, is a member of four halls of fame. (That’s not including the Baseball Hall of Fame where his namesake the legendary Detroit Tigers catcher is enshrined.) The 86-year-old added another honor when a pillar at the entrance of the headquarters of US Lacrosse was dedicated to the BGSU lacrosse program that he started. He and about 65 players along with families and fans traveled down to Maryland to mark the 50th anniversary of the team’s founding. For once, Cochrane was taken by surprise when the pillar was unveiled. Each of the 20 pillars along the perimeter of the field at the headquarters honors a college program, but BGSU is the first to be formally dedicated. Receiving this Legacy Honor is especially notable, Cochrane said, because BGSU no longer fields a varsity team, the program lasted from 1965-1979, when financial retrenchment forced the shuttering of several programs. Cochrane arrived in BGSU in 1964 from Johns Hopkins where he was recruited to coach both lacrosse and soccer. The soccer stadium now bears his name. At that time, both sports were little known in the Midwest. BGSU president at the time, William Jerome, came from Syracuse, New York, Cochrane said. Upstate New York has been a hot bed of lacrosse since before the arrival of Europeans. Jerome gave Cochrane 10 out-of-state scholarships and sent him east to find players, especially if they could play two sports. Many players, he said, competed in soccer in the fall and lacrosse in the spring, though some had a mix of other sports, including football. Football legend Jim Brown played lacrosse in high school and at Syracuse. When Cochrane traveled, he recruited students for the university not just players for the team, and if a young woman was interested in attending BGSU, he spoke to her as well. In these days of one-sport specialization, a few things are missed. Playing more than one sport, Cochrane said, allows a player to fully develop as an athlete and a person. Also, focusing on one sport, always moving the body’s muscles in the same ways, poses greater dangers of injury. The prevalence of torn ACLs among women soccer players is a notable example. During his tenure, the BGSU team won a couple Midwest championships and was nationally ranked and participated in the NCAA Division I tournament. He coached lacrosse until 1974. That earned him a place in the Ohio Lacrosse Hall of Fame. He’s also in the National Soccer Coaches Hall…


BGSU alumni back on campus & still eager to learn

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Lou Katzner was facing a class of unfamiliar student faces. That’s not unusual for the philosophy professor who has taught at Bowling Green State University since 1969, except this class included a couple students who graduated well before he started teaching here. The seven students in the class were part of the inaugural BGSU Alumni College. In her greeting to the several dozen students enrolled, President Mary Ellen Mazey said she looked for the program to grow over the years and reach more of the university’s 175,000 alumni. And she hoped their experience on campus would get them to consider how they can help future generations of Falcons. A major focus of the current fundraising campaign is scholarships, she said. And, in detailing all the building renovations underway, she said donors can have their names attached to a building or space within a building. Katzner wanted to explore the more intangible aspects of higher education. He led the graduates in a discussion of “What is the Value of a College Education?” The students ranged from Barbara Palmer, a 1954 graduate, to Sean Taylor, a 1998 graduate. At the conclusion, Katzner said: “The most important thing you can take away from college is how to learn.” That proved true for those in the class who’d made career shifts over their lives. Carolyn Christman, who graduated in 1985, has gone from being a school music teacher to a Methodist missionary. Dina Horwedel graduated in journalism in 1986 and then got a law degree. Her career has taken her around the world. Now she works for the American Indian College Fund as director of public education. She said one of her most enduring memories of her time at BGSU was advice by journalism professor Emil Dansker. He told his students that “everything is relevant,” Horwedel said. Also, “he told us to question everything.” Katzner said that approach is suffering in the current educational climate, which focuses so much on accountability. “It’s easy to get data on students’ ability to give answers. You can’t get data on how students ask questions.” That data-driven focus runs counter to what it means to be an American, Horwedel said. “We do question more. … That’s what’s made us so innovative. We find work-arounds. … It would be a tragedy if we didn’t continue to ask questions.” In the group that included several educators, Katzner’s lament about data-driven education drew sighs of recognition. “It all comes from things you can’t measure,” said Craig Bowman, who received a…


BGSU faculty member’s ideas on democracy to guide health system discussions in United Kingdom

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Dr. Albert Dzur, political science, has a vision of democracy that is inspiring people around the world to take a new look at the ways in which work can be organized and ethical decisions deliberated. Dzur calls this “democratic professionalism,” in which power is shared rather than hierarchical and social change is accomplished, not from above or by one-time movements, but in the daily business of life. He has researched and written extensively on the topic, including the books “Democratic Professionalism: Citizen Participation and the Reconstruction of Professional Ethics,” published in 2008 by Pennsylvania State Press, “Punishment, Participatory Democracy and the Jury,” published in 2012 by Oxford University Press, and a recent series for the Boston Review called “Trench Democracy: Participatory Innovation in Unlikely Places.” Dzur contends that while professionals such as doctors, judges or educators bring valuable specialized knowledge to decision-making and planning processes, the wisdom and experience of laypeople can be equally important. He advocates for spaces in which public deliberation can take place and presents compelling examples of change brought about by what he calls “load-bearing” citizens. They are those who are doing the work of transforming neighborhoods and schools, helping provide justice for those denied it, and helping gain broader access to health care. This democratization can also take place within the professions. Dzur’s research is being used as a framework for a two-year series of seminars called “Re-imagining Professionalism in Mental Health: Towards Co-Production,” held at Leeds and Oxford universities. Sponsored by the Economic and Social Research Council, one of seven research councils in the U.K., the series will focus on new approaches to mental health care that will embrace co-production, or authentic power-sharing, among service users, caregivers and professionals. According to the organizers, “One question which crops up quite often is ‘How does co-production differ from shared decision-making?’ A quick answer is that shared decision-making involves listening to service user perspectives, but co-production goes further than this. Co-production requires a fundamental democratizing of relationships. “The starting point for the seminar series is taken from political science, specifically Albert Dzur’s concept of democratic professionalism. Democratic professionalism is based on the idea that professional values, ethics and practices should be informed by public deliberation and debates.” Five organizations devoted to mental health will participate in the series, representing service providers, caregivers, public organizations and academics from a variety of disciplines. The hope is that by building bridges between the various players in the mental health care arena, everyone will benefit and professionals can find…


BGSU beat goes on throughout the summer with camps, academies and institutes

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The day after Boys State adjourned June 19, closing a 38-year chapter of history at Bowling Green State University, parts of campus were still buzzing. High school trumpet, horn, trombone and tuba players were putting their mouthpieces to their lips to learn the fine points of brass musicianship. Down the hall in the Moore Musical Arts Center, saxophones were creating the cacophony of 15 players trying to figure out a Miles Davis lick. Meanwhile in the Eva Marie Saint Theater in the Wolfe Center for the Arts, young thespians were standing before their peers reading monologues they’d just laid eyes on, often with surprising expression and understanding. As they performed theater professor Michael Ellison guided and encouraged them with and pithy words of advice, hand gestures, and a broad smile. The decision by the trustees of the American Legion sponsored event to move Boys State and its 1,200-plus delegates to Miami University is a setback in an ongoing effort to bring more people, young and old, to campus over the summer. “We’re always looking for opportunities to share the university and what it has to offer,” said Dave Kielmeyer, chief marketing and communications officer. For the past several years arrangements for those camps have been made through the office of Conference and Event Services. Patrick Nelson, who directs the office, originally arrived on campus as the director of the Bowen-Thompson Student Union, and his job has grown since then. The expansion of his duties makes sense, he said, since the student union is central to so many events on campus. The Accenture Report, which looked at myriad ways BGSU could save money, recommended in late 2013 that the university centralize its event service functions that had been dispersed in different academic and administrative units. Nelson said his office was already taking shape when the report came out. “The wheels were already turning,” he said. “We already saw a vision coming together.” Having Accenture’s stamp of approval helped the new office gain credibility across campus. Someone wanting to set up an event on campus just needs to “make one phone call and we’d take care of all the logistics.” Nelson was speaking just days before the Boys State trustees voted to leave BGSU. He deferred all comments about that decision to Kielmeyer. Nelson said his office is trying to get more and more people to consider what BGSU has to offer in the summer. Not all universities are as interested in that business, he said. This summer, campus will host…


Optimal Aging Institute hires administrator & schedules community fair

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS BGSU’s new Optimal Aging Institute (OAI) is moving ahead. Its inaugural project administrator has been recently named and a community fair is planned. Paula Davis has been named project administrator effective July 11, Dr. Marie Huff, dean of the College of Health and Human Services, has announced. Currently serving as BGSU’s director of corporate and Foundation relations, Davis served as both the assistant director and outreach coordinator of the Ithaca College Gerontology Institute from 2012-15. In addition, she successfully completed the Geriatric Scholar Certificate Program sponsored by the Columbia-New York Geriatric Education Center in 2013. “Paula’s many years of experience in marketing and fundraising, along with her experience in gerontology, make her uniquely qualified to lead the Optimal Aging Institute,” Huff said. “We look forward to collaborating with her and our community partners and other individuals on campus to develop our long-term strategic plan and beginning to provide engaging programs and resources for the community.” Davis will also be a speaker at the institute’s Optimal Aging Community Fair, to he held from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 1 in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union. The fair is open to all ages but does require advance registration by July 28. It will include an international keynote speaker discussing active aging, followed by panel discussions and interactive breakout sessions and health screenings in the afternoon emphasizing the seven dimensions of wellness. This event is free for people age 60 and over, BGSU employees and students, and $20 for others. Lunch is included. For more information, visit the OAI website or call 419-372-8243. The institute, based in the College of Health and Human Services, was strategically developed in 2016 to provide learning opportunities and educational materials focusing on optimal aging for service providers, health systems, entrepreneurs, corporations, caregivers, and older adults. The OAI has received a generous five-year commitment of financial support from Medical Mutual of Ohio.


Trustees boost Mazey’s salary & deferred compensation

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The Bowling Green State University Board of Trustees approved a 2.5-percent pay increase for President Mary Ellen Mazey this morning (June 23). Chairman David Levey said that the board, after reviewing her performance earlier in the day, felt the pay increase was merited based on a number of factors. Those included the successful negotiation of a contract with the faculty union – “that’s a pretty big accomplishment,” enrollment of larger and more academically prepared first year students, and more success in keeping students on campus so they graduate. He also cited an “improving relationship” with the university’s foundation. Aside from the union contract, which was approved at the May trustees meeting, all those other factors played a part in the meeting, which was held on the Firelands campus. The increase brings Mazey’s salary to $412,136, beginning in Sept. 1. The board also approved an additional 10-percent payment to her deferred compensation package. That $40,208 is on top of the 15 percent called for in her contract. Those payments are is based on her current salary. Mazey said that the pay increase was a vote of confidence in her performance. Of the accomplishments cited, she said she was particularly pleased that the number of incoming freshmen is increasing. The pay increase, she noted, was in line with the 2.5-percent increase employees not covered by the union will receive. The union agreement calls for a 3-percent increase in the compensation pool for faculty. That increase in compensation figured into 2017 budgets for the campus approved earlier in the meeting by the board. With an increase in state funding, BGSU expects to have revenues of $415.3 million, a 3.1-percent increase, and expenditures of $411.5 million, a 3-percent increase. The budget for the Bowling Green campus will be $288,376,367, a 2.6 percent increase. Chief Financial Officer Sheri Stoll said that after years of declines the State Share of Instruction is now increasing. The 2017 budget includes a 4-percent increase from last year. On the Bowling Green campus, that $70.7 million accounts for 24.5 percent of the revenue. Student tuition and fees account for 67.6 percent of revenue. That’s an improvement over just two years ago when students’ share was 71.7 percent. The university, Stoll said, benefited not only from more money allotted by the state, but also better performance. State funding is largely based on how many students graduate and successfully complete courses. The recruitment not only of more first year students, but also those who have the academic abilities that allow them…


Buckeye Boys State says farewell to BGSU

  By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Buckeye Boys State ended Sunday with the traditional call: “We’re adjourned.” Those words had special resonance at Bowling Green State University where the government education program has made its home for the past 39 Junes. Next year when the American Legion-sponsored program convenes, it will be at Miami University. The program’s board of trustees voted Thursday evening to approve a five-year contract to move the program to Miami University, dashing the hopes of locals who wanted to keep it here. The move had been rumored for weeks and had even been prematurely announced on two occasions earlier this year. The vote, said Boys state spokesman Jim Koppin, was not close. When all was said and down, it was a business decision. Despite a last-minute proposal matching Miami’s offer, “Bowling Green never came up with a proposal we could live it. As one local resident said, ‘it was too little, too late.’” Mayor Dick Edwards said on Friday he’d been told BGSU’s initial offer was an increase of 41 percent. Koppin said he’s been told the same figure. A jump in the cost of that magnitude would have been difficult for Legion posts around the state to absorb. All the delegates’ expenses are paid. It costs $300 to send a high school junior to the program. This year 1,250 were registered, though a few were not able to attend. The local posts pick up the tab, with some receiving corporate sponsorships to help cover the costs. Should that price tag go up to $400, he said, it would make it difficult, especially for a post like his own in Anna that has fewer than 100 members. “We just couldn’t have done it,” he said. “If we’d had to stay here under their costs, we would have curtailed the program.” And that’s not the direction Boys State is going, Koppin said. At the national Boys State meeting in Indianapolis last year, Ohio, which operates the largest program in the nation, was challenged to increase participation by 100 “to set an example.” Ohio did just that, he said. But if the program were asked to expand more, it would not be possible at BGSU. That may have been a factor in moving as well, he said. Miami could handle additional delegates. “We would have worked around it if we stayed here,” he said. “Or we would have turned some kids down. We don’t want to do that. We work hard enough to get them interested to turn down some who are…


BG’s Not in Our Town recognized nationally

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Four years ago, Bowling Green was struggling with how to confront racist acts and hatred in the community. Racial graffiti had been written on sidewalks, racist tweets were made about university students, and a local man with ties to known hate groups was arrested. City and university leaders came together and decided to try a Not In Our Town campaign. The program had worked in other communities across the nation to stand up against all forms of violence, discrimination and hatred. The effort took off, engaging more than 12 community organizations and collecting 50,000 pledges from students and community members who understand that hate hurts the entire city and campus. Earlier this month, those Not In Our Town efforts were recognized with a national award for adding to the quality of life in Bowling Green. The award was presented in Chicago by the International Town & Gown Association and Brailsford & Dunlavey. Accepting the award were local NIOT leaders Heather Sayler, representing the city of Bowling Green, and Leslie Galan, representing BGSU. Galan said the award came as a surprise since the recognition is normally given to programs that create economic development and infrastructure projects. “It’s an honor, when you think you’re flying by the seat of your pants,” Galan said. But the efforts are clearly paying off, she added. “It has really helped to change how students see things. It’s changing the quality of life for a lot of people.” The Bowling Green NIOT program is now being asked to share its success with other communities struggling with similar problems. “We have the same concerns, the same issues,” Galan said. Despite its success, Not In Our Town organizers will be the first to admit that their work is not over.  The community was reminded of that this week when the group participated in a vigil for the victims of the Orlando shootings. During the vigil, Rev. Gary Saunders disputed the notion that “Not In Our Town can go home and close the doors. It’s all better now.” The work is far from over, he said. The organization is committed to pointing out hatred and intolerance – and not settling for it as the norm. He mentioned the “Islamaphobia” discussions held earlier this year in response to discrimination against Muslims. “We get better after each event,” said Saunders, another NIOT organizer. But the Orlando shootings, and the hateful actions of some local motorists toward people holding daily vigils downtown for the LGBTQ victims, are a reminder that…


City, BGSU regret loss of Buckeye Boys State (updated)

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News University and city officials this morning are expressing regret by the decision by the trustees of Buckeye Boys State to move the program to Miami University. The board of the American Legion-sponsored program made the decision Thursday night after a year of negotiations on a new five-year contract. On two occasions this year, people associated with the Legion have indicated the program would be leaving BGSU, its home since 1978. A press release from Gerald White, director of Buckeye Boys State, stated that the decision was made by a majority vote of the board. The statement described the negotiations as “intense.” The agreement would have kept the mock government program on campus until 2021. Instead the group will convene next June at Miami University. Dave Kielmeyer, spokesman for BGSU, said that the university had negotiated in good faith and had made several “fair and competitive offers.” Mayor Dick Edwards, who attended Boys State in 1956 and was a BGSU administrator when the program was brought to campus in 1978, said he was “distraught” over the decision. He said he has “so much of my emotional self invested” in Boys State. The decision, he said, came from “an accumulation of frustrations” on the part of the trustees and the Legion. “I’m not unhappy with leadership of American Legion.” He said President Mary Ellen Mazey did intervene in the process to try to save the program. But “it’s been building.” There were concerns about access to certain services and facilities, including the Student Recreation Center. “It was a constant dinging.” An initial proposal that called for a 41-percent increase didn’t help, even though the university backed off later. “It set the wrong tone.” Miami University, on the other hand, said “whatever you want, we’ll provide.” That approach reminded Edwards of his time at the university when BGSU lured the program away from Ohio University. Getting the program here and keeping it here had been a total community effort. Officials like chief financial officer George Postich, who attended Boys State in Illinois, knew the value of the program, he said. The Boys State release noted several other proposals were made to attach Boys State, but that it came down to Miami and BGSU. “In the end, after a fair and equal presentation to the board of trustees on the merits and disadvantages of both institutions and a report to the Boys State Board on negotiations with Bowling Green State University, the board, by majority, voted to re-locate Buckeye Boys State to Miami…


Boys State leaving for Miami

A spokesman for Buckeye Boys State has confirmed that the event’s board of trustees voted Thursday to leave Bowling Green State University. Jim Koppin said he could not provide any more details until a press release is put out later today. Dave Kielmeyer, spokesman for BGSU, said that the university had negotiated in good faith and had made several “fair and competitive offers.” “We appreciate our long standing relationship with Buckeye Boys State and the American Legion and wish them the best of luck.” Boys State has convened every summer on the BGSU campus since 1978. It brings 1,200 high school students from around the state. President Mary Ellen Mazey stated earlier this month that 68 incoming BGSU freshmen had attended Boys State. Kielmeyer said BGSU continues to share Boys State’s mission of developing the leadership in Ohio. The university would like to continue offering a $1,000 renewable scholarship to attendees “if Legion is willing to work with us and provide that information to us.” “We’d like to support that mission in that way.”


NextGen Climate registering voters at BGSU Friday

NextGen Climate will be on the Bowling Green State University  campus registering students to vote during freshmen orientation events Friday at 1:30 p.m. outside the Bowen-Thompson Student Union. This voter registration initiative is part of NextGen Climate Ohio’s statewide campaign to register and mobilize young voters to help elect candidates who support acting to combat climate change. (See story on NextGe Climate at: http://bgindependentmedia.org/next-gen-enlists-young-voters-to-go-to-polls-to-fight-climate-change/)