Thursday, January 8, 2009

NCAA honors SMU athletes for volunteer flood work

Saint Mary’s is one of three schools to receive this year’s National Association of Division III Athletics Administrators awards honoring community-service projects and activities.

Saint Mary’s athletes were recognized for their efforts to aid flood victims in Minnesota.

SMU, along with York College of Pennsylvania and Stevens Institute of Technology each will receive $1,000 contributions to their general scholarship funds as recipients of NADIIIAA/Jostens Community Service Awards for projects during the 2007-08 academic year.

Ten other institutions also earned recognition in the program, which has honored Division III athletics programs’ community-service efforts annually since 2002. All of the institutions will be recognized by NADIIIAA at the NCAA Convention in Washington, D.C.

Saint Mary’s is a category winner for the first time as this year’s honoree for a one-time project or activity. SMU student-athletes returned to campus from summer vacation in August 2007 to find that the university’s fieldhouse was serving as an emergency shelter for victims of flooding in southeastern Minnesota. The Saint Mary’s student-athlete advisory committee, which already had begun planning an event designed to increase camaraderie among the school’s athletics teams, shifted efforts to aiding the flood victims.

In collaboration with SMU’s Volunteer Services, nearly 200 student-athletes and their coaches collected food and water for flood-relief volunteers, and many of those student-athletes fanned out to nearby communities to clean up and repair homes and to help restore a state park. The student-athletes were credited by a relief worker with saving homeowners weeks of clean-up work while demonstrating compassion for flood victims.

To read more about SMU athletes’ flood-relief efforts, go to

SMU to offer Doctorate of Psychology in Fall 2009

Saint Mary's University of Minnesota has been approved to offer a Doctorate of Psychology (Psy.D.) degree in Counseling Psychology. The university hopes to begin its first Psy.D. cohort of students in Fall, 2009.

Brother President William Mann, FSC, received approval notice December 29 from the university’s accreditor, the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). This is the culmination of three years of work which included an internal program development process; review and approval by the university’s state regulatory agency, the Minnesota Office of Higher Education; and review and approval by the HLC.

Saint Mary’s will spend the upcoming months making plans for implementation, including hiring a program director, finalizing syllabi, hiring faculty, and beginning marketing efforts. In the interim, questions can be directed to Merri L. Moody, dean of the Graduate School of Health and Human Services, (612) 728-5133,

‘SMU 10K’ citizens classic ski is Jan. 25 at Saint Mary’s

Saint Mary’s University is inviting the public to the annual “SMU 10K” classic ski event on Sunday, Jan. 25.

“We’re very fortunate to have an excellent trail system here that is both scenic as well as challenging,” said Chris Kendall, vice president for student development. “And this year we actually have snow, thanks to the weather and to our new snow-making capabilities as a result of a partnership with the Winona Ski Club.”

The event is open to all individuals, with a mass start slated for 1 p.m. On-site registration will begin at 11 a.m. at the Toner Student Center. The cost is $10, which includes a souvenir race bib and a completion medal. Medals will be awarded for men and women in open and recreational classes.

For more information or to receive a registration form, call Davey Warner at Ext. 8740. Check out more information online at

Jamaican learning community completes first semester

The first learning community in Jamaica in the M.Ed. in Teaching and Learning program finished its first full semester in late December 2008. Twenty-one students are participating in the learning community. Reports from students have been very positive and Jamaican colleagues have shared that there is increasing interest in the program as more teachers in the Mandeville area hear about it through their colleagues. The university is planning with its partner, the Catholic College of Mandeville, to begin a second cohort in Fall 2009.

Saint Mary’s will host a site confirmation visit by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), the university’s accreditor, in Jamaica in early February. This one-day visit is the final step with the HLC in affirming the university’s ability to offer the M.Ed. in Jamaica. Questions regarding the Jamaica initiative can be directed to Suzanne Peterson, director of the M.Ed. Program, or Tracy Lehnertz, director of Institutional Effectiveness.

Family entertainer Red Grammer will perform Jan. 13

Grammy-nominated family entertainer Red Grammer will bebop his way onto the Page Theatre stage at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 13.

With a playful, good-natured character, Grammer is a young-at-heart, premier entertainer of children and families. Parents Magazine has described Red as “the best voice in children’s music.” Having been featured on “The Today Show,” “CBS This Morning,” Nickelodeon, Showtime, PBS, and his own Disney Channel concert special, Grammer is practiced in lifting the spirits of families across the United States. He has set the gold standard for writing and performing music that playfully reconnects each one of us with the best in ourselves.

Tickets for the Page Series performance are $10 for adults, $5 for seniors and students, and are available by calling the Box Office, Ext. 1715, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, or online at

This presentation is supported by the Performing Arts Fund, a program of Arts Midwest funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art, with additional contributions from the Minnesota Arts Board, General Mills Foundation, and Land O’Lakes Foundation.

Saint Mary’s to feature two unique realist artists

"Dogs of the Empire" by artist Jason Bronner

"A Brief History," featuring artist Larry Holmes

The unique work of two vastly different artists — Larry Holmes and Jason Bronner — will be displayed inside Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries through Feb. 6.

Holmes, a realist painter, uses an overhead perspective when creating his pieces, which highlight textural beauty by positioning inanimate objects like shells or statues beside flowers or animals. Holmes’ exhibit, “A Brief History,” features a number of oil paintings depicting mosaics. “The concerns that I have in my work range from the formal to the fanciful with several issues between the two extremes,” he said, adding that his work “has come to be largely about the psychology of what is depicted and the gaps that this subsequently leaves for the viewer to fill. Ultimately, I am creating pictorial situations that are intended to leave the audience amused or bemused (sometimes both).” Holmes is professor emeritus at the University of Delaware, Newark.

Through his exhibit, “Dogs of the Empire,” Bronner depicts scenes of dogs through charcoal drawings on paper, oil paintings on canvas, as well as digitally. In examining the dog’s competing roles as hunter, guardian and companion, Bronner’s work makes a political statement.

“The title of this exhibition references two empires. One being that of the Roman Empire and the other being that of what has been called by many as the new Rome, the United States,” he said. “The dog can be a metaphor for the protective element of the government as well as the oppression of the state. The ancient Roman sculptures of dogs that are found in the Vatican … represent for me a romanticized idea of guardians and the positive protective power. If I apply this same concept to the U.S., the new Rome, I wonder if this canine in the 21st century has become feral and may not be a watchdog.” Bronner is associate professor of painting and drawing at Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania.

Admission is free and open to the public, and gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. For more information, call Ext. 1652.

Winona-area alumni gathering is tonight

The annual Winona-area alumni gathering is scheduled for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. today, Jan. 9, at the Alverna Center’s Great Room. Refreshments and hors d’oeuvres will be served.

Kowles and Crozier co-author article on Winona history

Dr. Dick Kowles, biology professor emeritus, has stepped out of his usual scientific sphere and published an article with Dr. Bill Crozier (SMU archivist) on some Winona history. The article is a historical look at the Polish National Alliance Chapter in Winona and the successful baseball team that the organization sponsored from 1935 to the early 1950s. The team, called the PNAs, consisted of a number of individuals who also had strong connections with SMU and Winona State University, including Max Molock (SMU coach), Max Kulas (SMU head of maintenance), and Clint Wager (SMU athletic star in several sports). The article, “Polish Spirit: Polish National Alliance Baseball and Winona Polonia,” was published in the newsletter of the Polish Genealogical Society of Minnesota (Volume 16, No. 4).

Teacher education programs re-approved

All of Saint Mary’s teacher education programs have been re-approved at the level of paper review — syllabus, program descriptions, course sequences, etc. — until 2015. The onsite visit will be Nov. 15-18, 2009.

The following programs were approved by the Board of Teaching in December: Undergraduate elementary education program, French K-12; Middle Level Endorsement program (5-8); Communication Arts; and Literature 5-12. Congratulations and thanks to Drs. Scott Sorvaag, Dorothy Diehl and John Reed, Susan Moore, and Carolyn Ayers for their work on these re-submissions.

At the November meeting, the BOT approved Physics 9-11 and General Science 5-8. Thanks to Father Paul Nienaber for his work with these standards.

Additionally, the Special Education (EBD/LD) program has been approved. Congratulations to Dr. Kathy Ryan for team leadership and her solitary work on this RIPA (Request for Initial Program Approval).

The Art Education K-12 RIPA is close to submission. Thanks to Michelle Cochran for leading this effort with the Art Department.

Thanks also to Betty Bethke for organization of the Medusa report.

History Book Prize winners announced 

Since 1995, the Saint Mary’s Department of History has awarded book prizes to recognize students for outstanding work. The following students were chosen for their work during fall semester:

• Matt Rebernick and David Spriegel won the book prizes in H125 Europe and the World.

• Emily Degallier, Amy Pearson, Jacob Rivet, and Bradlee Rysdahl were chosen in H150 American Experience.

• Benjamin Eirikson was recognized for his work in H250 Historical Thinking.

• Ryan Soukup and Daniel Streefland ended in a virtual tie for the best work in H333 The Reformation, and each will receive a book prize.

• Brian Bakalyar won the prize for both H357 History of Rock and Roll and H367 Europe 1914-1945.

The History Department congratulates these students.

15 honored through SMU Employee Recognition Program

Saint Mary’s employees Suzanne Deranek, Sally Dotterwick, JoAnn Frahm, Nicole Gerdes, Aubrey Hollnagel, Sarah Kay, Mary Kosel, Dr. Jeanne Minnerath, Katherine Pederson, Kenneth Pellegrini, Megan Radke, Joy Rockwell, Adam Stasica, Carol Tarras and Ronald Weimer were recognized during the university’s annual Christmas dinner Dec. 16.

The Saint Mary’s University Employee Recognition Program honors employees whose superior job performance has contributed to the university’s overall growth. Through these annual awards, Saint Mary’s acknowledges the key role these individuals have in the successful operation of the university.

Jazz notes

Swing Inc, including Eric Heukeshoven and Jerry Paulson of the SMU Music Department, will perform 8 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Jan. 9-10, at the Waterfront in La Crosse, Wis.

Chili cookoff is Jan. 30

The next SMU faculty/staff chili cookoff will be Friday, Jan. 30, as the next Let’s Do Lunch fundraiser for Nairobi, sponsored by the SMU Volunteer Committee. If you intend to compete, contact Deb Nahrgang at Ext. 6966 or, so that we know there will be enough chili to feed the masses. Prizes will be awarded to top three placers. SMU celebrity judges will be announced later.

Employee changes

• Mary McGaver, Jan. 1, athletics - assistant athletic trainer
• Tina Palmer, Jan. 8, TC director of development
• Renee Knutson, Jan. 9, director of study abroad/career services associate

Author Ron Hansen to speak Jan. 27

Ron Hansen, author of “Mariette in Ecstasy” and a book of essays called “A Stay Against Confusion: Essays on Faith and Fiction” will read from his books at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 27, in the Toner Student Center Lounge.

Hansen also has authored “Isn’t it Romantic,” “Desperadoes, “ “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford,” “Nebraska,” “Atticus,” and a children’s book, “The Shadowmaker.” He is Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ Professor of the Arts and Humanities at Santa Clara University. His novel “Atticus” was a finalist for the National Book Award in 1996.

His presentation, free and open to the public, is sponsored by Sigma Tau Delta, the national English honor society. Refreshments will be provided. For more information, call Dr. David Sokolowski at Ext. 1538.

Knowledge Acknowledged series begins Jan. 20

A series of presentations celebrating knowledge and passion will be held Tuesdays in the McEnery Center main lounge.

The first presentation, from 2 to 3 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 20, will feature Dr. Robyn Wangberg, physics, who is an Ironman triathlete. Dr. Wangberg will share her passion for triathlon and her recent adventures competing in the world championship of the Ironman Triathlon in Kona, Hawaii, and the Ironman Canada Triathlon. These events include a 2.4-mile swim in the ocean, a 112-mile bike ride, and a marathon run (26.2 miles).

Other upcoming presenters include Eric Heukeshoven, music; Monta May, communication and marketing; and Chris Kendall, student development, Gary LeMasters (husband of Ruth Ann Torstenson LeMasters at the library), and Dr. Wes Miller, social science. Light refreshments will be served.

Learn more about Italy study abroad program

SMU students have the opportunity to study abroad in Italy for three weeks in May. These students will travel and study in Rome, Florence, Venice and the surrounding Veneto region of Northern Italy.

This course is designed to provide students with the opportunity to study Italian art history, architecture, religion, culture and civilization.

An information session will be held 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 13, in the World Room, Hendrickson Center.

For further information or questions, call Preston Lawing, Ext. 1701, or

CTIE newsletter available on our website

For a colorful, picture-filled and informative brochure detailing events happening at Christ the Teacher Institute for Education in Nairobi, go to and click on “CTIE newsletter.” The December edition includes a profile of a current student, details of Christmas in Kenya, and other facts about the school, as well as events in Kenya.

SMU in the news

Here are some recent mentions of SMU “making the news” — in the Winona area and beyond.

• The January 9 edition of the Chronicle of Higher Education’s article “Colleges Offer Extra Aid to Strapped Students” mentions the Brother James Miller program at Saint Mary’s.

• The Minnesota Private College Council December newsletter featured a story about SMU Gifts for Winona in a roundup article about what campuses are doing to help those in need this year:

• An update about SMU’s investments was included in an area education story titled, “Area universities lose millions in investments” Jan. 1 in the Winona Daily News.

• SMU hockey players were thanked publicly for their work with area youth hockey players in a column Dec. 25 in the Winona Daily News titled, “It’s Sunday, do you know where your college student is?”

Congratulations to O’Shea family

Lindsy and Patrick O’Shea, Music Department, had a daughter, Genevieve “Evie” Irene, on Saturday, Dec. 13. The Saint Mary’s community extends its congratulations to the O’Shea family.

Sympathy to Bronk, Lofthus, Taylor families

Franklin Bronk, father of Leon Bronk (Maintenance Department) died Dec. 28, 2008. Cards of condolence can be sent to: Leon Bronk, Campus Box 39.

Lisa Holter, daughter of Cindy Marek’s (vice president for Financial Affairs) husband, Doug Lofthus died Jan. 1 of cancer. Cards of condolence can be sent to: Cindy, Doug and family, Campus Box 8.

Amy Taylor (M.Ed. program facilitator) died Dec. 27, 2008, of cancer. Taylor and her family were the recipients of The Taylor Richmond Benefit 2006. Donations are preferred in Warren Taylor’s name for an education fund for Isabella and Arbor, Amy and Warren’s young children. Cards of condolence can be sent to Warren at P.O. Box 108, South St. Paul, MN 55075. To see a touching news segment about Amy, featured on KARE 11, go to

The Saint Mary’s community extends its sympathy to the Bronk, Lofthus and Taylor families.