Bowling Green State University

Data science adding up for BGSU

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Bowling Green State University is ahead of the curve when it comes to data science. A week ago, the Board of Trustees approved a PhD and a master’s program in the rapidly expanding field. These degrees will make BGSU the only college in the country to offer a full range of programs from a bachelor of science through a PhD. Only one other university, IUPUI, has a similar pathway, and its undergraduate program is a minor. Michael Ogawa, BGSU vice president for Research and Economic Engagement, said the data analytics program addresses an expanding need. “Data is truly exploding now, and it will continue to do so,” he told trustees at the board’s educational session. “Because of this explosion of data and the utility of data and knowledge that the analysis of that can bring, there’s a tremendous need for data scientists.” In 2015 there were 3.35 million jobs advertised, he said. And that’s expected to grow by 15 percent in the next five years. Those positions are difficult to fill, and stay open longer than average. Starting pay for someone with a master’s degree, Ogawa said, is $80,000 a year. Jong Kwan “Jake” Lee, professor of computer science, said BGSU “is leading the way” in the field. Companies, he said, started collecting data about 15 years ago to see if the data would be “useful.” What they found out is the data itself “is not useful at all unless they get useful information out of it.” Now they need people who can ferret out what’s meaningful. That requires having the computer, statistical, and analytics skills to crunch that data and the ability “to present data in way others can understand,” Lee said. BGSU launched its effort with a gathering in 2010. By 2012 it had its data analytics program. That program now has 72 students, including 23 from Tianjin Polytechnic University in China, said Associate Dean Arthur Yeh. He expects about a dozen…


BGSU faculty granted tenure and promotion

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS The University celebrated the scholarly and creative achievements of 43 faculty members on May 4 when the board of trustees awarded promotion and tenure. The trustees also approved the hiring as associate professor with tenure of Dr. Neil Baird, for the English department. Baird joins BGSU from Western Illinois University, where he is an associate professor and director of the University Writing Center. Faculty promoted to full professor: • Dr. Neil Englehart, political science • Dr. Gabriel Matney, School of Teaching and Learning • Dr. Wei Ning, mathematics and statistics • Dr. Jeanne Novak, School of Intervention Services • Dr. Kurt Panter, School of Earth, Environment and Society • Linda Rich, library teaching and learning • Dr. Nancy Spencer, School of Human Movement, Sport and Leisure Studies • Dr. Mikhail Zamkov, physics and astronomy Receiving tenure: • Dr. Mohamad Mayyas, engineering technologies Tenure and promotion to associate professor: • Dr. Kelly Balistreri, sociology • Thomas Castillo, theatre and film • Dr. Douglas Ewing, marketing • Dr. Nicole Jackson, history • Dr. Andrew Kear, School of Earth, Environment and Society • Dr. Rebecca Kinney, School of Cultural and Critical Studies • Dr. Sidra Lawrence, musicology, composition and theory • Dr. Christina Lunceford, higher education and student affairs • Dr. Alexis Ostrowski, chemistry • Leigh-Ann Pahapill, School of Art • Dr. Shannon Pelini, biological sciences • Dr. Kimberly Rogers, mathematics and statistics • Dr. Jerry Schnepp, visual communication and technology education • Chris Willis, School of Educational Foundations, Leadership and Policy • Dr. Alexey Zayak, physics and astronomy Promotion to senior lecturer: • Cynthia Bailey, applied sciences • Elizabeth Burns, mathematics and statistics • Abigail Cloud, English • Ann Darke, mathematics and statistics • Dr. Daria Filippova, mathematics and statistics • Dr. Eric Mandell, physics and astronomy • Dr. Christina Miller, mathematics and statistics • Dr. James Pfundstein, world languages and cultures • Amanda Rzicznek, English • Dr. Allen Rogel, physics and astronomy • Kimberly…


BGSU trustees set tuition for first Falcon Guarantee class

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The incoming freshman class at Bowling Green State University will pay 5.9 percent more in tuition and fees than students are now. The trustees approved the increase as part of the Falcon Tuition Guarantee through which students are guaranteed that their costs for going to BGSU will not change over four years, except for some program specific fees. The incoming students will pay $5,610 a year, in tuition and fees. The out-of-state surcharge for undergraduate and graduate students is also increasing 6 percent, or  $452 a year. An out-of-state student will pay $9,604. This is the first time since 2013 that tuition has increased. Sherideen Stoll, the Chief Financial Officer, said the increase in tuition will boost university income by $2.2 million annually. The increase in the out-of-state surcharge will generate an additional $900,000. The out-of-state surcharge for graduate students will bring in $275,000 in more revenue. Stoll said even with these tuition increases “our relative total cost position has not changed” among other state universities. BGSU is the fifth least expensive. The tuition guarantee increases do not apply to distance learning students nor those enrolled on the Firelands campus. Interim Provost John Fischer reported earlier in the meeting that at this point the university is looking at an incoming class of 3,700 students. Thomas Gibson, vice president of student affairs and vice provost, reported that the university has started “to move the needle” on retention. The goal is to retain 80 percent of students from their first to their second year. As it stands the retention number is 79.87 percent. That’s five students short of hitting 80 percent, he said. He cautioned that there are several key events that result in “summer melt.” One is when grades come out. The university, he said, has been reaching out to students on academic probation, to assure them their performance can be turned around and there are programs on campus to help them. Another critical point…


Renovated University Hall wins gold for being green

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS It was the first building on Bowling Green State University’s campus, and now University Hall becomes the first renovated building on campus to receive the gold LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) designation. Awarded by the U.S. Green Building Council, LEED is “the most widely used green building rating system in the world and provides a framework to create healthy, highly efficient and cost-saving green buildings. LEED certification is a globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement.” While BGSU has received LEED designations for other new and renovated buildings, the gold designation for University Hall is particularly meaningful, President Rodney Rogers said. This LEED award further validates our commitment to good environmental stewardship and our pledge to reduce our carbon footprint. University Hall is the entry point for prospective students with the Office of Admissions, and also houses key, high-impact programs that contribute to student success, such as the Center for Undergraduate Research and Scholarship and Math and Science Education in Action. Designed by BPHD Architecture, the upgrades focused not only on energy efficiency but also on health, such as using low-emitting materials that are beneficial to the indoor environment for daily occupants and visitors. Plans for the renovation included a commitment to providing at least 35 percent of the building’s electrical energy from renewable sources. New windows throughout let in natural light, reducing electric demands while also restoring University Hall’s grandeur and views across the center of campus. The new electric lights are LEDs, which, again, reduce energy consumption and the building’s carbon footprint. Water consumption was also taken into consideration; the plumbing fixtures use non-potable water. The physical footprint of University Hall was reduced in the renovation, and materials that were removed were re-incorporated into the new structure, reducing the impact on landfills. More green space around the building was also gained. Even transportation was taken into account, with designated parking spaces provided for low-emitting vehicles and increased bicycle parking areas….


BGSU marks Sexual Assault Awareness Month with multiple events

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Bowling Green State University will host several events during Sexual Assault Awareness Month in April. Highlights of the month include “What Were You Wearing,” an exhibit by sexual assault survivors to challenge victim-blaming statements; the Sexual Assault Awareness Month 5K and Dog Walk; and the Clothesline Project. Additional events include free and confidential HIV testing, peer education presentations and a Step Up Step In basketball tournament. Guests can visit “What Were You Wearing” between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. April 11 in 208 Bowen-Thompson Student Union. This event is a collaboration between BGSU and the community, co-hosted by It’s on Us and The Cocoon, with support from the BGSU Women’s Center and Apparel Merchandising and Product Development Program. The Sexual Assault Awareness Month 5K and Dog Walk begins at 10 a.m. April 14 at the BGSU Student Recreation Center. Participants can register at bgsu.edu/5KDogWalk. Participants can also register for the We Are One Team (WA1T) Walk/Run, which aims to promote social justice, diversity, inclusion and teamwork through the power of sport. This year’s event will begin at 11 a.m. April 15 at Doyt Perry Stadium. For more information, contact Amanda Washko at awashko@bgsu.edu. The Clothesline Project, a visual display that bears witness to violence against women, will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 18 on the Education Lawn. In the event of rain, it will be held in 208 Union. The shirts in this display have been designed by survivors or those who care about them. The Wood County Clothesline Project began in 1995 and is protected and maintained by The Cocoon. On April 25, everyone is encouraged to wear jeans as a visible means of protest against the misconceptions that surround sexual assault. To view a complete list of calendar events and learn more about BGSU’s sexual violence prevention efforts, visit bgsu.edu/bgsucares.


Hate speech best countered with more speech, not suppression, BGSU panel says

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Hate speech may be hateful but it’s still protected by the First Amendment, even on a college campus. A faculty panel last week convened at the behest of student government explored the perimeters of what’s allowed and not allowed at Bowling Green State University. The conclusion from Patrick Pauken, Christina Lunceford, and R.G. Cravens was that the U.S. Constitution allows speech, however much some students may be disturbed by it. Pauken, who is an attorney specializing in education law as well as professor, said that those freedoms spelled out in the Constitution involve both rights and responsibilities, for individuals and institutions. Pauken, who admitted at several points “getting goose bumpy” when citing Constitutional principles, said if a forum is open to students, it must be open to all of BGSU’s about 300 student organizations. “We cannot discriminate against them on the basis of viewpoint.” “People are saying these incredibly hateful things,” Lunceford said. For the university, it’s a balancing act between its dedication to diversity and inclusion and respecting people’s free speech rights. The university has a response team ready if a group or speaker deemed divisive and offensive shows up. That team, she said, can work with students who choose not to deal with them to avoid confrontation. Some students may feel personally attacked by such speech. The team can also work with those who wish to counter their ideas. “If groups come with an alternative message that’s a conversation that exists,” Lunceford said. “We should be having those conversations.” “We don’t suppress speech,” Pauken said, “we engage in it. That’s what higher education does.” The Supreme Court has allowed great leeway for protestors, Cravens said. It has allowed the Westboro Baptist Church to protest at the funerals of slain military members. (The church claims their deaths are retribution for recognizing gay rights.) That doesn’t mean it is a free-for-all. Speech is subject to conditions of time, place, and manner, Pauken said. And…


Chinese dance troupe to visit BGSU

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS As part of a cultural exchange, a Yanshan University group from China will perform at Bowling Green State University and other northwest Ohio universities beginning March 12. Five faculty members and eight students from Qinhuangdao, China’s Yanshan University Performance Troupe will present “Whispering Dreams of a Spring Breeze,” demonstrating Chinese dance, music and martial arts. The BGSU performance is at 7:30 p.m. on March 12 in Kobacker Hall of Moore Musical Arts Center. Other performances are scheduled at University of Toledo and Lourdes University. The troupe’s visit is part of a “Sister City” relationship between Toledo and Qinhuangdao, China, which both are named a “Glass City.”  The two cities became sister cities in 1985. Dr. Joseph Chao, Narayen Endowed Associate Professor and chair of the BGSU Department of Computer Science, leads the local Qinhuangdao Sister City Committee. The purpose of the presentation is to “spread goodwill and share our cultures with one another,” Chao said. Chao and College of Music Dean William Mathis visited Yanshan University in December to plan for the cultural exchange performance. “During my visit to Yanshan University I had the personal honor see a rehearsal of several of the numbers that will be performed here at BGSU,” Mathis said. “I was thoroughly taken with the beauty and expressive display of both the traditional Chinese music and dance. Their presentation on our campus and the cultural exchange with our students will be a wonderful experience for all who are involved.“ Fourteen presentations are included in the performance with themes of ancient charm, diversified ethnicity and unique folk arts. The performances will include vocal soloists, Chinese dance, Chinese zither music, a Taichi fan performance, Chinese fiddle (er hu), and Southern Fist martial arts performance. Performers from Yanshan University are Xin Zhao, vocal professor; Nuan Wen, Chinese zither lecturer; Lingyun Ma, associate professor; Wennan Zhao, lecturer; Yiwei Wang, a senior student majoring in Pipa; and members of the Art Ensemble Dance Performers, Huiqian Cai, Zi Tian, Shihao…


Construction boom continues at BGSU

DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The transformation of the former Hanna Hall into the Robert and Patricia Maurer Center, the new home for the College of Business, took a large step forward when the Bowling Green State University trustees approved the final funding for the $44.5 million project. The project involves extensively renovating the 1921 building and constructing an addition on the eastern face more than doubling its size. Trustees also approved the naming of a variety of spaces within the building for private donors, whose funds are a linchpin of the financing of the building. Trustees approved $37,327,420. The trustees had already approved the balance of the funding. Sheri Stoll, the university’s chief financial officer, said that the university will borrow $28 million to pay for the project with the balance coming from private donors. She said that $11 million in donations and pledges for the project have already been received. “We’re making very, very good progress.” President Rodney Rogers also expressed confidence that the university would meet its goal. He said that the project has been a decade in the making. When he arrived on campus as business dean, people were talking about the inadequacy of the building housing business. “These facilities are lagging other business schools in the state.” He predicted that the new center “will drive enrollment and serve constituencies on campus.” Construction on the project has already begun with the relocation of utility lines under the nearby parking lot that started over the winter break. The project will be completed by summer, 2020, in time for the beginning of the fall semester. The building will include the offices for the college, classrooms and open areas, all intermixed, to promote collaboration. The current College of Business building will still be used for classes. At the end of the semester the programs still in the building will move to new locations. That includes the Gish Theatre being relocated to the theater in the student union, and with…


BGSU trustees vote to increase room & board charges

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The Bowling Green State University Board of Trustees approved increases in room and board Friday. These were the first fee actions taken under the Falcon Guarantee program, so for incoming first-year students these are the charges that they will pay during their undergraduate careers. The average increase will be 2.3 percent, but the actual amount varies depending on the residence hall and room. Chief Financial Officer Sheri Stoll said that the state asks the university to report the cost of its standard double room. Such a room will cost $2,865 next year, up $75, or 2.7 percent. Room rates vary from $2,210, up $40, or 1.8 percent for an economy triple in a tier 2 residences  (Conklin, Offenhauer, Founders)  to $4,120, up  $90, or 2.2 percent in a tier 3 hall (Centennial, Falcon Heights, Greek units.) Stoll said that in considering room rates the university has to balance “competing issues.” It must be cognizant of how much local rental prices are, and Bowling Green has some of the lowest real estate prices. But it must also make sure it’s bringing in enough money to support the programs offered by residence life. Also, Stoll said, the university has to take in enough revenue to maintain the buildings to make sure that “we are able to keep residence halls that students are going to want to come and live in.” The trustees also approved 3-percent increases in meal plans. The plans will now range in price from $1,719 for a Bronze Plan to $2,220 for a Gold Plan. Also, the Community Plan, formerly known as the Commuter Plan, will increase to $325 from $315, a 3.2 percent increase. The name of the plan was changed to reflect that it is used by faculty, staff, and community members as well as commuting students. That plan gives card holders 55 meals. The new board rates will hold for the class of 2022 for their next four years. Students…


Rodney Rogers named 12th president of BGSU (updated)

BY DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News In naming Rodney Rogers as the 12th president of Bowling Green State University Friday, the Board of Trustees signaled approval of the institution’s direction. Rogers is a familiar figure who came to BGSU in 2006 as dean of the College of Business, moved up to provost and on Jan. 1 took over as interim president when Mary Ellen Mazey surprised the university by announcing her retirement. Rogers is also the first president with a BGSU degree. He received his Masters of Business Administration from BGSU. Megan Newlove, who chairs of the board, said: “When the board started looking at what we wanted in our next president, we realized we had just what we wanted right here.” Kyle Johnson, the undergraduate trustee on the board, said he’s heard several people on campus say they hoped Rogers was named as president. Asked about this being Rogers first presidency, Newlove expressed confidence in him. “We’ve seen him grow in each role. We have confidence he’ll grow in this role.” Rogers, 59, received a five-year contract with a salary of $245,500. In a press conference after the meeting, Rogers said he was building on the great foundation laid down by Mazey and those who came before her. A public university has a particular charge to serve the public good. They do that by having programs that are relevant and focus on societal issues, he said. The university’s work on clean water, forensic science and the opioid crisis as examples of that. In an interview following his remarks said he will take every opportunity he can to advocate for the value of higher education. “There’s a lot of value to the work our faculty do. We need to articulate to the public why that was a great investment.” That research is more and more integrally related to the teaching. It is not enough simply to lecture, he said. The goal is to engage students in “focused, discovery-based inquiry.” A…


BGSU looks to hook prospective students at presidents Day Open House

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Monday was the day that Bowling Green State University hoped to seal the deal with high school seniors shopping for a college education. The university’s Presidents Day Open House Monday attracted about 4,000 guests to campus. Shortly before noon, Cecilia Castellano, vice provost for strategic enrollment planning, reported that 1,400 prospective students had registered. Including family members and others accompanying the students, that’s about 3,500 visitors. The event was scheduled to continue until midafternoon and people were still registering. Castellano said about 70 percent of students who attend end up attending BGSU. It’s the biggest day for visits at BGSU. Castellano said the goal is to give visiting high school sense “a sense of community, to feel that they can belong here.” A campus fair with table for academic departments, support services, and activities filled the ballroom in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union. BGSU is showing off all the opportunities students have to stand out, Castellano said. They were also offered chances to connect with current BGSU students and faculty “so they can find their niche.” They were given a list of dozens of classes they and their parents can attend. She was part of that effort stationed in the ballroom helping visitors find what they needed. The Open House allows them to visit every residence hall where freshmen live “so they can picture themselves here,” she said. While many students were here already planning to commit, some were still on the fence. John Spragg, from Strongsville, is interested in the criminal justice program especially as it relates to forensic science. He was heading off to a reception hoping to meet faculty and learn more about interaction between forensics studies and the Bureau of Criminal Investigation lab on campus. His older brother studies criminal justice at Kent State, and he’s considering joining him. Still he’s considering BGSU as a way of “striking out on my own.” John Hahn had also whittled his choices down to…


City at work repairing water main break on campus

The City of Bowling Green is currently repairing a water main break along Park Avenue near Lot W. It is not known when repairs will be completed. Affected buildings include the College Park Office Building, the Greenhouse, Central Services and the Park Avenue Building. These buildings do not have restroom or drinking fountain service at this time. The closest available restrooms are in the Technology Building. Please see signage in the affected areas for more information.


Faculty told student evaluations don’t play into tenure, promotion decisions

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Acting Provost John Fischer sought to reassure faculty about a new approach to student evaluations of courses at Bowling Green State University. Starting next fall, students will answer the same six questions regardless of the course they are taking, and these questions can be answered online, not just in class. These will be in addition to specific questions posed by particular academic departments. A presentation on the Teaching and Learning Evaluations drew fire from faculty when a report was presented at last month’s Faculty Senate meeting. The criticism included a charge that colleges and universities were using such quantitative data to justify employing more part-time faculty, even though the methods of gathering those evaluations is flawed. The faculty online discussion group has been active with back and forth about the issue since that meeting. Fischer told Faculty Senate that the new evaluations would not be used for any promotion, tenure, or re-appointment decisions. Those are covered by the contract with the BGSU-Faculty Association. The evaluations serve more institutional purposes. “We need a university measure that will give us some sense and data of how students think we’re doing on teaching and learning,” he said. While written comments are more helpful, Fischer said, there’s no way to gather and summarize that data. Each of the six questions will have a space for written comments. He noted that when the College of Education and Human Development put its evaluations online the number and length of the written comments increased dramatically. Asked by senate member Craig Zirbel if these are the six questions he would have chosen, Fischer equivocated. He said he was reluctant to say anything that could reflect negatively on the working group that put together the proposal over the past two years. He did allow he may have included a couple other questions. During the January Faculty Senate discussion, David Jackson, president of the Faculty Association, said that all the questions were directed toward…


Interim President Rodney Rogers is on a mission to maintain the positive momentum of BGSU

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The night before Interim President Rodney Rogers sat down with BG Independent News for an interview, he had given an introduction to a Beyond the Dream performance honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Preparing his remarks gave Rogers the chance to reacquaint himself with the words of Dr. King. He was struck that at the end of his life Dr. King said he wanted to be remembered as someone who “lived a committed life.” That’s what Rogers, who assumed the presidency of Bowling Green State University on Jan. 1, hopes for those who come to study at the university. “We want to help students think about what is a committed life,” he said. A career is part of that. “But there are other parts to one’s life. In a democratic society, it’s important we have committed citizens.” Helping to shape “an educated and knowledgeable citizenry that can sustain a democratic society” is part of the mission of a public university. It is why education remains important, Rogers said. In some circles, it’s become fashionable to question the value of higher education. Higher education is about more than the student landing that first job after earning a degree, though that’s important. “We’re not serving their needs if we’re not thinking about all those future careers,” he said. “I think we’ve been a little lax in higher education in not reminding the public that they have placed their trust in us as public institution to educate the citizenry of tomorrow.” Those citizens will be faced with dealing with an enormous amount of data and technology both on the job and off, Rogers said. Rogers, who was provost, stepped into the interim role leading the university when President Mary Ellen Mazey stepped aside late last year in a move that surprised many. “The board has asked me to make sure we continue to build on the progress that President Mazey, and others before her, established,” he said…


BGSU spring enrollment numbers on track

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Enrollment numbers for spring semester show Bowling Green State University on track to achieve its retention goal next fall. The university’s 15-day enrollment figures show 91 percent of the freshmen who came to campus last August are still BGSU students, said Cecilia Castellano, vice provost for strategic enrollment planning, at a press briefing Monday. At that pace the university should attain its goal to have 80 percent retention of those students. “We are right on target to have 80, hopefully a little more,” she said. “As we continue to enroll strong academic freshman class they continue to persist and retain at a stronger rate.” Retention is important because that and number of graduates are the key factors in determining how much state money the university receives. Overall BGSU enrollment is flat with a decline on the Firelands campus offsetting a slight increase on the Bowling Green campus. Total enrollment on the BG campus is 16,554, up 0.3 percent from last spring. Castellano said few first year students enroll in January. Only 62 enrolled this year. However the university did attract about 250 transfer students. About half are from community colleges while the rest are from other for-year institutions, she said. The university saw a decrease in graduate students. That reflects the nationwide trend of fewer international students coming to the United States to study. “The national political rhetoric may be part of that,” Castellano said. But it also is the result of students, particularly in India, having difficulty getting visas from their governments. She said that the university is working with a large group of international graduate students to resolve the problem so they can enroll on fall. The enrollment in online graduate courses is robust, she said. The university has 78 more graduate students taking online course. Most of these are for professional graduate programs. BGSU has been pushing those programs as a way of boosting enrollment and attracting tuition dollars. Unlike traditional…