FIRST Robotics, Year 2 was a success. Despite the weather conditions outside growing increasingly wintry over the weekend, the environment inside Ryder Center was exciting, dynamic and well-received by thousands of visitors. Robotics is an all-hands-on-deck occasion on our campus, and our hundreds of volunteers - students, staff, faculty and friends of the university - stepped up to the challenge. Again. A special word of thanks to Sue Brasseur and her colleagues in The Conference Center whose tireless work behind the scenes makes the event possible, and to Adrianne Cole, director of STEM, and Kathy Anderson, administrative secretary, who did a terrific job organizing the volunteers. To everyone who contributed to the effort: Thank you.
We made quite an impression, especially in the eyes of high school students and parents who saw our campus for the first time. You may have read about one of the returnees from last year's Robotics event who now is enrolled for the fall semester because of that experience. There are similar stories out there. Hopefully, some of the first-time guests from last week are now strongly considering joining the Cardinal family. Some of the numbers from last week suggest this could be the case. Nearly 3,000 students shared their contact information with Admissions and received free T-shirts; the vast majority used the FIRST Robotics mobile app or website, which has saved a great deal of time on the data entry side. My thanks to Jason Swackhamer, director of Web Communications, who worked to implement the technology. And thanks again to all who made this event a success.
All faculty and staff are invited to attend the two remaining open forums where Deborah Huntley, provost and vice president of Academic Affairs, and members of the Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM) steering committee will discuss our enrollment management plan. This plan focuses on strategies relating to recruitment, marketing, retention and academic programming. The remaining open forums are scheduled next Monday, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., and Wednesday, from 11 a.m. to noon, in the Emeriti Room. Select the following link to RSVP for one of the forums.
I was saddened this week when two members of our campus community passed away.
Jim Mitchell joined SVSU in 1977 as a professor of accounting, and in 1979, he became dean of the College of Business & Management until his retirement in 1992. Jim and his late wife of 60 years, Barbara, established two scholarship-supporting endowments to aid students studying both vocal music as well as academic programs in the College of Business & Management. Jim passed away Sunday. For information on his funeral arrangements, go to MLive.
Assistant men’s basketball coach Kalen Foreman passed away suddenly from an apparent heart attack early Thursday morning at age 25. He was a 2-time graduate – bachelor’s and master’s – and an assistant coach on the men's basketball team. He also was a former player on the team from 2013-15 and was popular on campus. Our deepest condolences to his family and friends.
I was happy to introduce our friends in state government to the SVSU family during Wednesday's Cardinals in the Capitol gathering in Lansing. A caravan of students, staff and faculty traveled there to participate in a poster session/luncheon in the State Capitol building, as well as a legislative reception in the early evening at a nearby restaurant.
Our students and faculty are engaged in amazing research projects. You have an opportunity to see many of them on display when our Undergraduate Research Program hosts the university-wide SVSU Student Showcase next Friday, April 27 from 1 to 4 p.m. in the Ott Auditorium of Gilbertson Hall. The day will feature posters, papers, and performances that have been submitted by more than 100 students. The afternoon will conclude with a brief presentation of faculty and student awards. The day is an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the wide variety of accomplishments of our students including research and creative endeavors throughout all five colleges. Please consider attending this exciting occasion to bring together our talented and motivated students from across campus to share their work with faculty, peers, and external audiences.
Beginning Monday, many of you will begin seeing and hearing a new wave of marketing material, this time geared toward increasing interest and enrollment in our graduate programs. TV, radio and digital advertisements for this particular campaign are scheduled to extend into late July. The content is outstanding. View a preview of the new TV commercial here.
You all are invited to the BATS Project: Reinvent Urban Communities presentation today in the Curtiss Hall banquet rooms. For those unfamiliar with this initiative, the project involves art, business, sociology and theatre students offering ideas and solutions to Saginaw County issues identified by community leaders. A poster presentation is planned from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., and a broader presentation - featuring a mural unveiling, theatre sketches, and data-based presentations - is scheduled from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Our art students are honoring Bay City's most influential individuals and professionals by creating 10 different murals. Those murals will be unveiled during a dedication ceremony Wednesday, May 2, at 2 p.m. at the Bayshire Building on Saginaw Street in downtown Bay City. Among those depicted in the murals are Bay City native Madonna as well as Civil War soldiers, fire rescue workers, lumberjacks, and athletes.
One of the more colorful events on campus is quickly approaching. The South Asian Student Association will host the Holi Festival of Colors - an annual Hindu holiday celebrating the beginning of spring and the "victory of good over evil" - this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Hamilton Gymnasium. The tradition involves encouraging participants to throw colorful powder at each other. Food, music, a dance competition and a number of other activities also will be included in the celebration. Tickets are $15 for the general public and $10 for students. Guests can pay $5 to participate only in the color throw. Children 6 and under can participate for free. For more information and to purchase tickets, you can visit sasasvsu.org.
Congratulations to the 11 students initiated last Friday into Alpha Mu Gamma-Theta Omicron, SVSU's chapter of a national collegiate foreign language honor society. The ceremony took place in Founders Hall. These are students studying German, Japanese and Spanish languages. I would like to thank the group's adviser, Maribel Colorado-Garcia, assistant professor of Spanish, and all of the faculty and staff who have supported this outstanding honors society.
I was pleased recently to learn Josie Born, a music education major from Elkton, was chosen to serve in the National Flute Association Convention internship program in Orlando this August. Josie will be working behind the scenes with the organization's leadership to prepare for the 4-day annual convention that celebrates flute music played across the world. This is an incredible opportunity that stands as a testament to Josie's passion for music as well as SVSU's elite music department.
Our track & field athletes continue to impress. The men's team is now ranked No. 24 in the nation. This news arrived around the same time we learned Andrew Mudd was named GLIAC Men's Field Athlete of the Week following a stellar performance at the Cerritos Invitational in Norwalk, California, where he finished first in the decathlon event. A number of our men's and women's track & field student-athletes individually are ranked high in NCAA Division II. Sam Black is ranked No. 11 in the decathlon category; Allison Dorr, No. 12 in the 10,000-meter; Tom Goforth, No. 8 in the 10,000-meter; Mudd, No. 4 in the decathlon; and Noah VanderVeen, No. 7 in the high-jump.
For the second week in a row, the weather will affect our home baseball schedule. The team was scheduled to play Wayne State here Friday and Saturday. Because of the poor condition of the field, those games will be moved elsewhere. The team will play Friday at 4 p.m. at Detroit PAL Field, located at the site of the old Tigers Stadium, now redeveloped. The team then will play a doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m. Saturday at Wayne State's Harwell Field. They then play a single game at noon Sunday, also at Harwell Field.
Keep an eye on svsucardinals.com for potential updates to the softball schedule. For now, the team is scheduled for a doubleheader at home against Davenport at 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. Friday. Go Cards!