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State of the University Address, Sept. 22

State of the University Address
President Lester A. Lefton will present his fifth annual
State of the University Address on Thursday, Sept. 22,
at 4 p.m.

The university community is invited to join Kent State University President Lester A. Lefton on Thursday, Sept. 22, at 4 p.m. for his fifth annual State of the University address. The speech will be given in the Kent Student Center Kiva.

In keeping with tradition, the president will review progress made toward the university's excellence agenda and look to opportunities and challenges in the coming year.

A reception will follow in Room 204 of the Kent Student Center.

Watch it live on the web at or tune in to WKSU-FM at 7 p.m. on Sept. 22 for a recorded broadcast. After Sept. 22, to view the webcast and see a copy of the address, click on the Speeches link on the president's home page at

Posted Sept. 19, 2011

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Come to the Benefits Fair

The Division of Human Resources invites all Kent State University employees to the third Open Enrollment and Wellness Fair on Thursday, Sept. 29, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Kent State Student Center Ballroom.

Wellness Fair
The Benefits Fair will provide faculty and staff the
opportunity to meet with the university’s benefits-related

Faculty and staff will be able to meet with representatives from the university’s medical, dental, vision, insurance and other benefits-related vendors for 2012. Employees are encouraged to come to the fair to gather all the information they will need to make their decisions for Open Enrollment, which will run from Oct. 9-21. View the list of vendors.

The event will also feature healthy cooking demonstrations, live fitness demos featuring Zumba, aerobics and line dancing, and strength training tips from Intercollegiate Athletics.

The fair will run in conjunction with a Kent Campus flu clinic for faculty, staff and their eligible dependents (age six and older). The clinic will be held from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. in the ballroom. Registration is required for the flu shots; registration and other information is available at

For questions contact the Benefits Office at 330-672-3107 or

Posted Sept. 19, 2011

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Kent State Alumni Association Presents University President Lefton at Oct. 5 Cleveland Networking Luncheon

The Kent State University Alumni Association hosts its next Cleveland Networking Luncheon on Wednesday, Oct. 5, at noon at the City Club of Cleveland with featured speaker Kent State President Lester A. Lefton. His talk is titled “Five Years of Realizing the Vision.” Lefton will provide a five-year progress report that reflects the major institutional goals identified in the Kent State University Strategy Map.

enter photo description
Kent State President Lester A. Lefton will speak at the
next Kent State University Alumni Association's Cleveland
Networking Luncheon on Wednesday, Oct. 5.

Lefton this year marked his fifth anniversary as Kent State’s president. Under his leadership, the university’s enrollment has grown 23 percent in the last five years, which ranks Kent State as the second largest public university in Ohio. Student success measures include the highest graduation and retention rates among public universities in Northeast Ohio. The university also has achieved record fundraising. For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2011, private contributions to the public research university reached $42.1 million, breaking the institution’s fundraising record for the third year in a row and bringing the university’s Centennial Campaign total to $239.4 million, just more than $10 million away from its $250 million goal.

Lefton’s commitment to making Kent State a world-class university has led to new partnerships and initiatives that benefit students as well as the Kent State community, the city of Kent, the region and the state. With the tireless work of several public and private collaborators, the $100-million downtown Kent redevelopment project is becoming a reality. Key academic objectives have been realized, including program approvals and enrollments in the new College of Public Health, continued integration of the eight-campus system, expansion of distance learning offerings, and growth in international enrollments and partnerships.

Alumni, friends of Kent State and the general public are welcome to attend the Oct. 5 Cleveland Networking Luncheon. The cost is $15 for Kent State Alumni Association members and $20 for nonmembers. Limited seating is available. The registration deadline is Friday, Sept. 23. For reservations, call 1-800-320-5368 or respond online at

The City Club is located at 850 Euclid Ave. in downtown Cleveland. For more information on the City Club, including parking and directions, visit

The Cleveland Networking Luncheon Series is a quarterly event presented by the Kent State Alumni Association. For the past two years, the luncheon has been held in the downtown Cleveland area as part of the new KSU in Cleveland initiative. With more than 25,000 alumni living or working in Cuyahoga County, the KSU in Cleveland initiative focuses its efforts on offering a variety of programming in the downtown area to cater to the variety of needs of Kent State alumni. The Cleveland Networking Luncheons are designed to engage alumni working downtown who are interested in networking with fellow alumni, attending speeches on various topics and remaining engaged with the university.

To learn more about KSU in Cleveland and to join the KSU in Cleveland monthly listserv, email Brittney Braydich at For more information on the Kent State Alumni Association, visit

Posted Sept. 19, 2011

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Kent State Folk Festival Begins Sept. 21 with Impressive Artist Line-Up

From Sept. 21 - 25, Kent will be the epicenter of a musical celebration that crosses generations and cultures during the 45th Kent State Folk Festival. Highlights include dozens of free performances throughout the city for Folk Alley ‘Round Town on Friday, Sept. 23, and workshops at the Kent State University Student Center on Sept. 24.

Seth Glier to perform at the Kent Stage on
Sunday, Sept. 25, at 7 p.m. as part of the 45th Annual
Kent State Folk Festival.
Festival organizer, WKSU-FM, has created a mobile version of the event’s Web page for easy access on mobile devices: Tickets, schedules and other event information can be accessed from this site while on the go.

Tickets for all concerts can be purchased in person at The Kent Stage, Woodsy’s Music and Spin-More Records, by phone at 330-677-5005 and online at Kent State University students may buy discount tickets for all shows by presenting a valid Kent State ID at time of purchase.

Below is the line-up for the 45th Kent State Folk Festival (all concerts at The Kent Stage unless otherwise noted):

Wednesday, Sept. 21, at 8 p.m.
The Carolina Chocolate Drops (KSU Auditorium in Cartwright Hall) – $25 reserved, $15 Kent State students

Thursday, Sept. 22, at 8 p.m.
The Dirty Dozen Brass Band with Mo’ Mojo – $25 reserved, $15 Kent State students

Friday, Sept. 23, (various times)
Folk Alley ‘Round Town (36 venues throughout Kent) – Free

Saturday, Sept. 24, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Workshops (Kent Student Center) – Free

Saturday, Sept. 24, at 8 p.m.
The Low Anthem with Sleepy Sun and David Wax Museum – IN ADVANCE: $20 reserved; $15 students; $10 Kent State students. AT THE DOOR: $23 reserved; $18 students; $13 Kent State students.

Sunday, Sept. 25, at 7:30 p.m.
Peter Yarrow with Seth Glier – $35 gold circle; $25 reserved; $15 Kent State students.

Festival support is provided by Kent State University, the City of Kent, Marc’s, Kashi, Cascade Auto Group, Dominion East Ohio, Audio-Technica, Seagram’s Smooth, Lehman’s, PARTA, Fifth Third Bank and Great Lakes Brewing Company. Posted Sept. 19, 2011

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Fall Bowman Breakfast Spotlights New Vision for the City of Kent

Bowman Breakfast
Kent State University President Lester A. Lefton and
Kent City Manager David Ruller are the featured speakers
of the fall Bowman Breakfast on Thursday, Sept. 22.

On Thursday, Sept. 22, at 7:30 a.m., Kent State University's fall Bowman Breakfast will feature Kent State University President Lester A. Lefton and Kent City Manager David Ruller. The breakfast will be held in the Kent Student Center Ballroom. Their presentation is titled “Shared Vision for a New Kent.”

Doors open at 7 a.m. Breakfast begins at 7:30 a.m., and the talk starts at 8 a.m.

The Bowman Breakfast, a tradition since 1963, is sponsored by Kent State University and the Kent Area Chamber of Commerce. The breakfast provides students, staff, faculty and members of the community with a forum to address important issues and topics.

Tickets are $9 per person, payable at the door. Invoicing is not available for this event. Reservations can be made by calling 330-672-8664 or signing up online at by Sept. 19.

No-shows who register will be billed. To cancel an existing reservation, call Mary Mandalari at 330-672-8664 or

Posted Sept. 12, 2011

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Kent State Planetarium Presents “Introduction to the Autumn Sky”

At the first in a series of free public shows for the 2011-2012 academic year, Kent State Planetarium Director Dr. Brett Ellman will present the center’s “Introduction to the Autumn Sky.” This annual presentation showcases the prominent autumn constellations, points out celestial objects that are visible to the naked eye and tours the solar system.

The show will take place on Friday, Sept. 23, Saturday, Sept. 24, and Friday, Sept. 30, at 8 p.m. nightly in room 108 Smith Hall on the Kent Campus.

The shows are open to anyone age six and up. Reservations are recommended as seating is limited. To reserve a seat, call 330-672-2246. Persons needing special accommodations are requested to call at least one week in advance of the show.

Posted Sept. 19, 2011

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University of Arizona Professor Dr. Aomar Boum to Lecture at Kent State about Jewish Culture and Societies in the Sahara

Kent State University’s Department of Pan-African Studies presents Dr. Aomar Boum, who will speak about Jewish culture and societies in the Sahara. His lecture, titled “Saharan Jewry: History, Memory and the Politics of Identity,” takes place Monday, Sept. 26, at 7 p.m. in room 214 of Ritchie Hall. The lecture follows a reception that will be held at 6 p.m. on the first floor of Ritchie Hall.

The lecture and reception are free and open to the public. Boum will be available to Kent State students and faculty on Tuesday, Sept. 27, from 10:45 a.m. to noon at an informal gathering hosted by Hillel at Kent State.

Boum’s appearance at Kent State is co-sponsored by the Jewish Studies Program, with further support from the Department of History, the Office of Global Education and the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

“This is an opportunity for professors and students alike to learn more about the diverse cultures of North Africa,” said Wendy Wilson-Fall, chair and associate professor of Kent State’s Department of Pan-African Studies.

Boum is an assistant professor of Near Eastern studies, religious studies and Judaic studies at the University of Arizona. In 2006, he earned a Ph.D. in socio-cultural anthropology from the University of Arizona, with a minor in history and a minor in Near Eastern studies. Boum is currently the vice president of the American Institute for Maghrib Studies.

“We need to be informed about the Sahara because it is important historically and in the current political climate,” Wilson-Fall said. “It is of immediate importance to everyone.”

Boum was born and raised in the oasis of Mhamid, Foum Zguid (Providence of Tata, southern Morocco). He earned a master’s degree from Al-Akhawayn University and a bachelor’s degree from Cadi Ayyad University, both in Morocco.

Boum’s main research explores how different generations of Moroccan Muslims remember, picture and construct Moroccan Jews, Jewishness and Judaism. Boum’s research revolves generally around the Middle East, along with North, West and Sub-Saharan Africa. His interests include Moroccan history, ethnic and religious minorities, Islamic movements, Moroccan politics, Islam, migration, traditional Islamic and modern education, Arab media and youth movements.

Boum has published a number of articles on the history and historiography of the Jewish communities of Southern Morocco, Jewish-Muslim interfaith dialogue, representation of Jews in Moroccan museums, Jewish migration in the context of Arab nationalism and Zionism, and the Alliance Israelite Universelle in rural Moroccan communities.

For more information, visit the Jewish Studies Program website at or the Pan-African Studies website at

Posted Sept. 19, 2011

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Campus Forum on Diversity Scorecard on Sept. 23

Kent State’s Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion invites the entire university community to a presentation by Dr. Estela Bensimon about her experiences with the diversity scorecard assessment that is soon to be implemented at Kent State University. Bensimon’s talk will be held on Friday, Sept. 23, at 10:30 a.m. in the Kent Student Center Kiva and the event is free and open to the public.

Dr. Estela Bensimon
Dr. Estela Bensimon will talk about her experiences with
the diversity scorecard assessment that is soon to be
implemented at Kent State University.

The program will cover origins of the assessment, as well as challenges, success stories and best practices regarding implementation at various postsecondary education institutions throughout the nation.

Bensimon is a professor of higher education and co-director of the Center for Urban Education at the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education. She is an expert in the area of equity in higher education and has published extensively on equity, organizational learning, practitioner inquiry and cultural change.

During her visit to Kent State, Bensimon will:

  • Provide expertise from the developer of the signature Equity Scorecard that served as a model of Kent State’s diversity scorecard;
  • Bring a breadth and depth of experience with the scorecard approach, as well as implementation of assessment nationwide and its successes, failures, and/or criticisms within other institutions of higher education; and
  • Provide a unique opportunity for administrators, faculty and staff to seek expert advice and build academic and staff support for assessment as Kent State begins the implementation of its own diversity scorecard.

For more information on Kent State’s Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, visit

Posted Sept. 19, 2011

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Sustainability Task Force Announces Brown Bag Lunch Series

Kent State University’s sustainability task force will hold a series of brown bag lunch sessions to discuss a variety of sustainability topics that affect the university. The first session, “Kent State University – Energy Conservation, Renewable Energy and More,” takes place Tuesday, Sept. 20, from noon to 1 p.m., at the Moulton Hall ballroom. The sessions are open to the public and attendees are encouraged to bring along their lunch.

Bob Misbrener, project manager in the Office of the University Architect will present the status of renewable energy on campus, energy efficient retrofits and the schedule for future upgrades.

“Kent State has made great progress in the area of energy conservation, including three major energy conservation projects addressing about 50 buildings and about 3 million square feet,” says Melanie Knowles, sustainability manager. “A project to install solar photo-electric panels on the Field House to produce electricity is currently in the proposal phase.”

New sustainability icons are located around the campus to bring attention to sustainable initiatives.

For more information about the sustainability brown bag lunch series, contact Melanie Knowles at or call 330-672-8039.

Posted Sept. 19, 2011

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