Kent State’s Wick Poetry Center Receives Grant to Conduct Outreach With Akron Public Schools
The Wick Poetry Center in the College of Arts and Sciences at Kent State University has received a $33,472 grant from the Akron Community Foundation through the Howard Atwood Family Fund. The grant project, titled “Encouraging New Voices,” is a collaborative initiative between the Wick Poetry Center and Akron Public Schools, designed to increase literacy among students in grades three through 12. The project will run from October 2014 to October 2015.
Beginning this winter, teaching artists will begin working with students in the classroom at Akron Public Schools. Next summer, the Wick Poetry Center will host a workshop for participating teachers on the innovative methods of teaching content subjects through creative writing exercises.
“We have a long-standing reputation of pioneering programming and outreach initiatives,” says Jessica Jewell, program director at the Wick Poetry Center. “This grant allows us to meet a direct need in the community, which is to empower students to share their stories and creative accomplishments, while also engaging in deeper learning experiences.”
Members of the Wick Poetry Center will hold writing residencies that focus on creative writing and the Common Core in Akron Public Schools. Students will explore individuality and community with the ultimate goal of increasing literacy.
The project also will feature student participation in writing workshops and field trips to the Wick Poetry Center at the May Prentice House where they will engage with a state-of-the-art community classroom, visit the Poetry Park and the Kent Campus. Jewell estimates that this project will impact 10 to 15 teachers and approximately 210 students.
“The project is the first of its kind for the Wick Poetry Center, which draws on 30 years of programming and outreach initiatives,” Jewell says. “Although it is not uncommon for poetry centers to offer poetry-writing workshops for area classrooms, we are proposing meaningful changes to poetry workshop curriculum that address the needs of implementing state standards for content subjects.”
The Wick Poetry Center at Kent State was founded in 1984 and will be celebrating its 30th anniversary on campus this September. Recently, the Wick Poetry Center relocated from Satterfield Hall to the newly renovated May Prentice House on the Lefton Esplanade.
For more information about the Akron Community Foundation, visit www.akroncf.org.
For more information about the Wick Poetry Center, visit www.kent.edu/wick.
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Governor Names Stephen Perry and Perry Kimmel to Kent State Board of Trustees
Gov. John Kasich has appointed two new trustees to the Kent State University Board of Trustees. Kasich named Stephen A. Perry of Canton, Ohio, to a nine-year term as a trustee and Perry “PJ” Kimmel of Canfield, Ohio, to a two-year term as an undergraduate student trustee. Perry’s appointment ends May 16, 2023, while Kimmel’s appointment concludes May 16, 2016.
Perry is well-known to the area as the recently retired president and executive director of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, where he successfully led a $27 million capital campaign to remake the iconic museum. Perry came to the hall after serving the Timken Company for 37 years and serving the public as director of the Department of Administration Services under Ohio Gov. George Voinovich from 1991-1993 and as the administrator of the General Services Agency under President George W. Bush from 2001-2005.
He is a graduate of Canton’s Timken High School. Perry attended classes at Kent State University at Stark before earning a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Akron. He also has a master’s in management from Stanford University. His long list of awards includes Kent State’s President’s Social Responsibility Award and Kent State’s Distinguished Alumni Award.
Perry replaces Jane Murphy Timken, whose term as a Kent State trustee recently expired.
Kimmel, a junior finance major and an honors student, has served as a Kent State Student Ambassador at events across the Kent Campus and has been honored for his academic success with a selection for the President’s List and to the Alpha Lambda Delta National Honors Society. Kimmel is currently completing an internship with Eaton Corporation via its multicultural summer program in Marshall, Michigan.
Kimmel’s service to others includes twice using his spring break time to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity in Western New York. He also has served as vice president of the Financial Management Association (FMA) and as vice president of Kent State’s Collegiate Distribution Education Clubs of America (DECA).
Kimmel replaces Alex Evans, whose term as a student trustee recently expired.
The Board of Trustees is the governing body of Kent State. By Ohio law, the Board is responsible for selecting and appointing the president; setting the operating budget; approving personnel appointments; granting all degrees awarded by the university, including honorary degrees; establishing tuition and fee rates; approving contracts; and approving all rules, regulations, curriculum changes, new programs and degrees of the university.
Kent State’s Board of Trustees consists of 12 members, nine of whom are voting members appointed by the governor of the state of Ohio, with the advice and consent of the state senate, to nine-year terms of office. Two student trustees, one undergraduate and one graduate, are appointed by the governor to two-year terms of office. Since 2011, the Board has appointed a national trustee, who serves a three-year term, as an additional nonvoting member.
For more information about Kent State’s Board of Trustees, visit www.kent.edu/bot.
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Kent State University Board of Trustees Special Meeting, Aug. 11
The Kent State University Board of Trustees will hold a special meeting today, Aug. 11, at 9 a.m. in the George Urban Board of Trustees Conference Room, which is located on the second floor of the Kent Campus Library.
Trustees will retire into executive session upon convening to consider specific topics as provided for under Ohio’s “Sunshine Law.” No standing committee meetings will be held, and no recommendations or votes will be discussed or taken.
The Board will hold its next, regular business meeting Wednesday, Sept. 17.
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Geology Doctoral Student Awarded NASA Ohio Space Grant Fellowship to Study Lake Erie Water Quality
Dulci Avouris, an incoming Kent State University Geology Ph.D. student, was always interested in water. On any typical day, the Grand Rapids, Michigan, native swam in Lake Michigan and drove past the pumping station where they process her drinking water. Over the years, she noticed changes in the beach and water levels. She became more and more interested in the issues of algal blooms, zebra mussels, Asian carp and preserving the quality of Great Lakes water. These experiences and her curiosity eventually led her to Kent State to follow her passion.
Avouris was recently awarded a NASA Ohio Space Grant Consortium doctoral fellowship in Applied Geology to study the water quality of Lake Erie through satellite remote sensing. By analyzing NASA satellite data, she will assist in identifying potential harmful algal blooms (HABs), which pose numerous risks to human and animal health in addition to impacting taste and odor of drinking water for affected populations in the region.
With her advisor, Joseph Ortiz, Ph.D., professor of geology in the College of Arts and Sciences at Kent State, Avouris will expand on established methods for using remote sensing data from the MODIS instruments, onboard both the Aqua and Terra NASA satellites, to identify various color-producing agents (CPAs) across the entire Lake Erie basin. Data is collected from the European Space Agency’s MERIS and United States’ MODIS instruments that both measure the reflectance of light from various bands in the visible and infrared. The use of MODIS data will allow the researchers to analyze water quality on a larger scale, as well as take advantage of twice-daily imaging, providing more complete coverage of the Lake Erie basin.
The color-producing agents may be phytoplankton, colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM), detritus, or terrigenous inorganic particles. Ortiz, who has been studying water quality since 2004, says the rapid identification of constituents in the water is vitally needed to provide timely data for water management purposes and for the detection of HABs.
“Historically, the optical complexity of Lake Erie has made remote sensing applications challenging,” Ortiz says. “However, new reflectance data from the MERIS sensor has produced excellent results in detection of chlorophyll-a concentrations, leading to an effective method for discriminating between various CPAs. This is particularly important because Lake Erie serves as an economic and social resource, and provides much of the regional drinking water supply.”
Ortiz says that some of the harmful side effects of the blue-green algal blooms that produce a number of toxins, include skin rashes and liver and neurological problems in humans as well as a discoloration and foul taste in the water.
“Young children, the elderly and pets are most at risk. We need to watch for the EPA warnings on the Ohio EPA website,” Ortiz says. “When phytoplanktons die, their bodies create a drawdown of the bottom-water oxygen. This creates a dead zone in the summertime due to low to no oxygen in the water.”
Avouris is building on the knowledge and skills she acquired during her master’s degree program in geophysics at Michigan Technological University, where she also earned a bachelor’s degree in geology. There, she was a recipient of a NASA Michigan Space Grant Consortium award, which allowed her to continue her master’s degree thesis, investigating new ways to apply remotely sensed information to volcanic activity.
“I want to contribute to the understanding of the Great Lakes ecosystems, so that oversight, management and husbandry of our water resources can be both timely and effective,” Avouris says.
The award will provide her with the resources to conduct research during her time at Kent State. Avouris is considering two possible career paths, either continuing research as a faculty member at a four-year university while teaching classes, or working as an environmental consultant in the Great Lakes area.
“I believe that this doctoral program will help me focus on which direction I want my career path to take. However, either path would allow me to be effective and involved in preserving the quality of Great Lakes water.”
For more information about Kent State’s Department of Geology, visit www.kent.edu/geology.
For more information about the Ohio Space Grant Consortium, visit www.osgc.org/fellowship.html.
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