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Grand Opening of Kent State University’s Blackstone LaunchPad Program Set for Sept. 28

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The Kent State University Blackstone LaunchPad program
offers Kent State students, employees and alumni a safe
place to discuss and develop business ideas. Kent State’s
Blackstone LaunchPad office is located on the first floor of the
Kent Student Center, beside the University Bookstore.

Kent State University will hold a grand opening of its Blackstone LaunchPad program on Friday, Sept. 28. The event celebrates the establishment of the entrepreneurial initiative at the university. Kent State faculty, staff, students and alumni are invited to attend an open house that will take place from 1 - 4 p.m. at the Blackstone LaunchPad office on the first floor of the Kent Student Center, beside the University Bookstore.

Kent State’s Blackstone LaunchPad program emphasizes entrepreneurship as a viable career path and gives Kent State students, faculty and alumni the skills, knowledge and guidance they need to start new companies. The program, which accommodates all students regardless of major, and involves local entrepreneurs as mentors, started offering services to students in late May.

“Faculty and staff should attend the open house to clearly see what Blackstone LaunchPad offers,” says Julie Messing, executive director for Entrepreneurship Initiatives at Kent State. “It is more than just advising entrepreneurs on the startup of their business. It is a safe place to discuss ideas without judgment, and receive the guidance and networking to help transform those ideas into businesses.”

The Blackstone Charitable Foundation and The Burton D. Morgan Foundation, sponsors of the initiative, committed to a $3.2 million, three-year partnership with Kent State University and three other area colleges and universities to make the Blackstone LaunchPad program possible. Both foundations hope to foster entrepreneurship and job growth in Northeast Ohio through the program.

Messing says that to get started with the Blackstone LaunchPad program, faculty, staff, students and alumni can complete the personal profile form that is on the program’s website, after which they get validated and invited to submit a venture form and establish meetings with venture advisors.

“We want to emphasize that the Blackstone LaunchPad program is a free and confidential service. Students, faculty, staff and alumni can be reassured that their business concepts are kept completely confidential by LaunchPad staff,” says Kate Harmon, program manager for Kent State’s Blackstone LaunchPad program. “All LaunchPad staff, including student employees, sign nondisclosure agreements to uphold this level of confidence.”

Harmon says that Blackstone LaunchPad clients can schedule meetings at their own pace with the program’s venture advisors who will mentor them through the development of their businesses and introduce them to a network of leading industry entrepreneurs. One-on-one entrepreneurial guidance is also supplemented with Blackstone LaunchPad events and workshops that broadly address common start-up business concepts and highlight local entrepreneurs in specific industries.

For more information about the Blackstone LaunchPad program at Kent State, visit

Posted Sept. 24, 2012

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Tony Award-Winning Performer Ben Vereen Visits Kent State University

Vereen performs “Steppin’ Out with Ben Vereen” on Oct. 10 and delivers free arts-related lecture on Oct. 11

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Tony award-winning performer Ben Vereen
will be at Kent State on Oct. 10 and 11 for a
performance and lecture.

Kent State University’s College of the Arts, in conjunction with the Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series, presents the community with two unique opportunities to see Tony award-winning performer Ben Vereen. On Wednesday, Oct. 10, Vereen and his band will perform “Steppin’ Out with Ben Vereen” in the E. Turner Stump Theatre on the Kent Campus at 7:30 p.m.

Vereen and his band will perform music by such greats as Sammy Davis Jr. and Frank Sinatra, while also performing some of the most-loved songs of Broadway. Patrons can expect to hear such great songs as “The Lady is Tramp,” “It Was a Very Good Year,” and “My Way,” “If I Ruled The World,” “Ol’ Black Magic” and “Mr. Bo Jangles.” Vereen’s performance will also feature music from such great Broadway shows as "Jesus Christ Superstar," "Cats" and "Hair,” among others.

Tickets are $50 for gold circle seating, $25 for general reserved seating, $20 for seniors (60+), $10 for students with a valid college ID and for those under age 18. Tickets are available for purchase at the new Performing Arts Box Office located in the Roe Green Center for the School of Theatre and Dance in the Music and Speech Building at 1325 Theatre Dr. on the Kent Campus. Tickets can be reserved by phone at 330-672-ARTS (2787), in person or online at The Performing Arts Box Office is open Monday–Friday, noon – 5 p.m., and will be open one hour prior to the performance. The box office accepts Visa, MasterCard, Discover, cash and personal checks. Tickets will only be sold at the door, depending on availability.

On Thursday, Oct. 11, at 7:30 p.m. in the Kent Student Center Ballroom, the Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series continues Vereen’s visit to campus with a free, public lecture. The lecture, “Up Close and Personal with Ben Vereen,” will feature Vereen weaving light conversation and personal experiences in with thoughtful reflections on arts advocacy, overcoming adversity, arts in education and disabilities in the arts.

Reservations, recommended but not required, can be made by calling 330-672-ARTS (2787) or online at Seating will be available on a first-come, first-served basis at the door. Doors will open at 6:45 p.m. A complimentary dessert reception will follow the lecture.

Since 2002, the Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series has presented guest artists respected in the field of theatre, dance, visual arts, music and architecture.

Posted Sept. 24, 2012

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World-Renowned Harvard Chemistry Professor to Speak at Kent State on Oct. 9

Whitesides to speak in the Kiva about simplicity

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Harvard Chemistry Professor George M.
Whitesides will speak about "Simplicity as
a Component of Invention," on Oct. 9 at
Kent State.

On Oct. 9, Kent State University will host a seminar featuring Harvard Chemistry Professor George M. Whitesides at the Kent Student Center Kiva. The seminar, “Simplicity as a Component of Invention,” will begin at 3:30 p.m. and is free and open to the public.

With more than 950 scholarly scientific articles, Whitesides is one of the most cited scientists in the world for his work in the areas of NMR spectroscopy, organometallic chemistry, molecular self-assembly, soft lithography, microfabrication, microfluidics and nanotechnology. He is currently the Woodford L. and Ann A. Flowers University Professor at Harvard, one of only 21 university professorships at the institution. He is listed as an inventor on more than 50 patents and has co-founded more than 12 companies with a combined market capitalization of more than $20 billion.

One of his many current research and development projects, the fabrication of a medical diagnostic lab-on-a-chip, has gained international notoriety for its simple, effective design. The low-cost “lab-on-a-chip,” made of paper and carpet tape can be made for only one cent. He has co-founded a nonprofit called Diagnostics for All that aims to provide dirt-cheap diagnostic healthcare devices to people in the developing world.

"Complexity is relatively simple to think about (at least for academics); simplicity is more complex,” Whitesides says. “This seminar will consider simplicity, together with an idea we call stackability, as a parameter in research, using two examples—one from ongoing large-scale technology, and one from our own research.”

Whitesides received his A.B. degree from Harvard College in 1960 and earned a Ph.D. in chemistry from the California Institute of Technology in 1964. Among his many awards, Whitesides is the recipient of the American Chemical Society's Award in Pure Chemistry (1975), the Arthur C. Cope Award (1995), National Medal of Science (1998), the Kyoto Prize in Materials Science and Engineering (2003), the Dan David Prize (2005), the Welch Award in Chemistry (2005), the Priestley Medal (2007), the Dreyfus Prize in the Chemical Sciences (2009) and the 2009 Benjamin Franklin Medal in Chemistry.

To learn more about Whitesides, go to the Whitesides Research Group home page.

Related video: Professor Whitesides TED talk (Feb. 2010) on "Toward a Science of Simplicity."

Posted Sept. 24, 2012

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Faculty and Staff Appreciation Day

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Kent State faculty and staff are invited to Faculty and Staff
Appreciation Day on Sept. 29 at noon at Dix Stadium.

Head Football Coach Darrell Hazell and the Flash it Forward program invite Kent State faculty and staff to Faculty and Staff Appreciation Day on Sept. 29 at noon at Dix Stadium.

Faculty and staff can bring a guest to the Golden Flashes game against Ball State.

Along with showing support for the team, Coach Hazell wants to offer faculty and staff a well-deserved thank you for their hard work at the university.

Faculty and staff can show their Kent State ID to redeem two free tickets at the MAC Center Ticket Office before Sept. 28 and be entered into a drawing to win an autographed bat from the 2012 baseball team that finished fifth in the nation.

This is a gold-out game, so wear gold gear or be one of the first 1,000 fans to the Indoor Tailgate Zone to receive a free gold T-shirt.

For more information and to see a schedule of the Golden Flashes games, visit

Posted Sept. 24, 2012 | Madalyn Etzel

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Kent State University College of the Arts Celebrates Dual Milestones

College marks 10th anniversary of Schroth Visiting Artist Series and prestigious All-Steinway status for the Hugh A. Glauser School of Music

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Kent State University’s College of the
Arts and the Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist
Series present pianist Arnaldo Cohen at
a Kent Campus event on Oct. 13.

Kent State University’s College of the Arts is celebrating two milestones. The Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series, known for presenting impressive guest artists since 2002 to the university and community in the areas of visual arts, music, theatre, dance and architecture, celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.

Additionally, the college’s Hugh A. Glauser School of Music recently acquired the All-Steinway designation after completing its Steinway campaign. In honor of these two impressive accomplishments, the college, in conjunction with the Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series, proudly presents pianist Arnaldo Cohen to the Kent Campus on Saturday, Oct. 13, at 7:30 p.m. The performance by the highly lauded, Brazilian-born pianist Cohen will take place in the University Auditorium in Cartwright Hall at 650 Hilltop Dr. on the Kent Campus. Free parking is available in the Cartwright Hall lot off of Terrace Drive.

Performing on a nine-foot Steinway Concert Grand D, Cohen’s program for the evening will include such pieces as Bach-Busoni “Chaconne,” Alberto Nepomuceno “Air (from Suite Antiga),” Luis Levy “Valsa Lenta No. 4,” Radames Gnattali “Valsa No. 7,” Francisco Braga “Corrupio (Valsa Capricho),” Ernesto Nazareth “Odeon,” Ernesto Nazareth “Apanhei-te Cavaquinho,” Schumann “Arabesque op. 18,” and Chopin’s “Ballade No. 1” and “Scherzo No. 2.”

Advance ticket reservations are recommended to ensure a seat. To reserve a seat, call 330-672-ARTS (2787) or visit the new Performing Arts Box Office in the Roe Green Center of the Music and Speech Building at 1325 Theatre Dr. or reserve online at The box office is open Monday – Friday, noon-5 p.m. Non-reserved tickets will be offered at the door based on availability. Doors will open at 7 p.m. Complimentary refreshments will be provided in the lobby following the concert.

Cohen has a reputation for astonishing his audiences with the musical authority and blistering virtuosity of his performances. His graceful and unaffected platform manner belies playing of white-hot intensity, intellectual probity, and glittering bravura technique bordering on sheer wizardry.

The Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series has brought noted artists such as composer Stephen Schwartz, Next to Normal actress Alice Ripley; Grammy-winning Emerson String Quartet; postmodern minimalist artist Richard Tuttle; artists and fashion designers Ruben and Isabel Toledo; and internationally acclaimed dance company Ballet Florida, to name a few. The Schroth series was established in 2002 by Cil and the late Max Draime of Warren, Ohio, to honor their dear friend, Tom Schroth (1922-1997). A noted regional architect, Schroth designed the Butler Institute of Art’s Trumbull museum in Howland, as well as numerous other award-winning projects. Schroth spent his life in Niles, Ohio, as a prominent architect and inveterate collaborator in the artistic life of the Mahoning Valley and Northeast Ohio. A world traveler, he saw human creativity as a window framing human experience. The Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series brings diverse views through that window to the Kent Campus and community. The events are free and open to the public.

For more information, visit

Posted Sept. 24, 2012

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Symposium on Flexible Liquid Crystal Devices to be Held Sept. 26-27

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Kent State University will hold a two-day symposium from
Sept. 26-27 to celebrate its traditional strength in liquid
crystal research and showcase the latest developments
in flexible liquid crystal devices.

Kent State University announces a two-day symposium to celebrate its traditional strength in liquid crystal research and showcase the latest developments in flexible liquid crystal devices: displays, e-writers, eyewear, photovoltaics, sensors and biomedical devices. It will feature presentations from technology and business leaders in each field and a poster session reporting the latest research and developments from members of FlexMatters, the Northeast Ohio collaborative fostering the growing regional cluster in flexible electronics.

The symposium, to be held at the Kent Student Center Kiva, Sept. 26-27, will bring together academic and industry researchers, regional business leaders and students who have an interest in the science and promising new flexible liquid crystal device technology.

The symposium will provide a platform for local and international research and industry leaders to discuss opportunities and hurdles inherent in flexible electronic devices, including research, development and manufacturing challenges.

Kent State University's Glenn H. Brown Liquid Crystal Institute (LCI), established in 1965, is the world's most comprehensive research, technology transfer and education program of its kind. Building on their extensive research in displays and electro-optics, Kent State researchers are exploring new frontiers in energy and medicine through their work on flexible organic photovoltaics and flexible implanted bioelectronics for diagnosis and therapeutics.

The keynote speaker, Michael McCreary, Ph.D., will give an overview of flexible electronics. He is the deputy chief technology officer for E Ink Corporation, the world’s largest supplier of displays to the eBook industry, which appear in products such as the Amazon Kindle. At E Ink, he is responsible for creating a portfolio of advanced technologies that will enable new generations of novel display products. McCreary is a 38-year veteran of the imaging industry and held a number of leadership positions with Eastman Kodak Company (NYSE: EK) prior to joining E Ink, including serving as the general manager of the company's microelectronics technology division. In that role, McCreary had responsibility for Kodak's solid-state imager business, including research and development, engineering, manufacturing, business development, marketing and sales. In addition to his E Ink responsibilities, McCreary currently serves on the Board of Directors of the US Display Consortium, and the Technical Advisory Board of MC10. McCreary earned a B.S. with honors in chemistry from Principia College and a Ph.D. in physical organic chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has also attended executive business programs with the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School.

Other speakers include:

  • Asad Khan, Kent Displays
  • Bahman Taheri, AlphaMicron
  • Byron Clayton, NorTech
  • Shizuo Tokito, Yamagata University
  • Miko Cakmak, University of Akron
  • Joe Klinehamer, Genvac Aerospace
  • John West, Kent State University
  • Jan Lagerwall, Seoul National University
  • Deng-Ke Yang, Kent State University
  • Nicholas Abbott, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Gary Wnek, Case Western Reserve University
  • Matthew Putman, Columbia University and Nanotronics Imaging
  • Christopher Malcuit, Kent State University
  • Alberto Fernandez-Nieves, Georgia Institute of Technology

Registration is required for this event, which is free to students, faculty and staff of Kent State University. To register, go to:

All non-Kent State registrants must pay a registration fee of $150 at the online registration site:

To learn more about the symposium, visit the event home page:

Immediately following the symposium, NorTech will host its Fall FlexMatters Cluster Meeting. Attendance is free, but RSVP is required, and lunch will be provided. FlexMatters successes, challenges, and exciting next steps as a cluster will be discussed at the meeting. Adam J. Bartsch, Ph.D., director of the Spine Research Laboratory at The Cleveland Clinic, will speak about his experiences at the clinic and the need for integrated smart technologies to help mitigate the risk associated with these injuries. A tour of the Liquid Crystal Institute labs will be offered at the conclusion of the meeting. To RSVP for the meeting, please visit:

For more information, contact Jim Maxwell at

Posted Sept. 24, 2012

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Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration Continues

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Two students dance at Risman Plaza during the LNC/SALSA
Festival that took place on Sept. 15 to celebrate Hispanic
Heritage Month.

Kent State University’s Latino Networking Caucus (LNC) and the Spanish and Latino Student Association (SALSA) are presenting a diverse lineup of events for National Hispanic Heritage Month. This celebration is to recognize the contributions that Latinos and Hispanics have made in the United States.

Hispanic Heritage Month allows people to learn more about the Hispanic culture and community,” says T. David Garcia, Kent State’s associate vice president for enrollment management and chair of the LNC. “At Kent State, we have faculty, staff and students from different Latin American countries that have their own traditions of music, food and dance. I invite everyone to attend one or all of our scheduled events to learn more about the Hispanic community.”

Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month each year from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on Sept. 15.

The month-long celebration continues with the following Kent State events:

National Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration
Tuesday, Oct. 2, at 6 p.m., Progressive Field, Cleveland

Former Cleveland Indians player Carlos Baerga will be the special guest. Tickets are $10, $25 and $50.

Noche Caliente
Wednesday, Oct. 10, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Eastway Dining Hall, Kent Campus

The public is invited to enjoy Latino cuisine (for purchase) and learn how to salsa dance.

Kent State Homecoming 2012
Saturday, Oct. 20, various times:

Breakfast and Parade
The Latino Networking Caucus will participate in the Kent State’s 2012 Homecoming Parade. From 9 to 11 a.m., the public is invited to enjoy free breakfast and great seats for the parade at the Williamson Alumni Center.

The LNC Alumni Awards Luncheon
The LNC Alumni Awards Luncheon will take place in Room 204 of the Kent Student Center. Doors open at 11:30 a.m. Cost is $10 per person. Registration at is required.

Homecoming Football Game
The Kent Golden Flashes take on Western Michigan at 3:30 p.m. at Dix Stadium.

Dinner, Music and Dancing
Beginning at 7 p.m., enjoy an evening of dinner and dancing at Ritchie Hall.

For more information about Kent State’s Latino Networking Caucus and related events, visit or call Garcia at 330-672-4050.

Posted Sept. 24, 2012

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