SVSU continues to make strides in addressing the opioid epidemic and other health issues in rural Michigan. This most recently involved securing a $2.8 million federal grant to combat health crises in underserved communities. This four-year grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration will allow SVSU to enroll 25 nurse practitioners each year to complete the psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner post-graduate certificate program; 100 students are expected to complete the program within a four-year period. The goal is to increase the number of mental health professionals in Michigan, one of the states hit hardest by the opioid epidemic.
Congratulations to David Schneider, professor of communication, for being recognized by the National Education Association and the National Council of Higher Education as the 2019 Higher Educator of the Year. David has been a part of the SVSU faculty for 34 years and has always been committed to students’ success, particularly improving retention rates. David also works with faculty and staff nationwide on this issue and has served the university as president of SVSU’s faculty union. He is also a board member of the Michigan Association of Higher Education, where he previously served as president. Congratulations, once again, on this well-deserved honor.
Some exciting news out of our history department this week: Professor of History John Baesler was recently published in Smithsonian Magazine. His article, “Why Lie Detectors Can’t be Trusted,” addresses the history and efficacy of polygraph tests and their use during the Cold War. John has also written a book on this topic. You can read John’s article at: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/why-lie-detector-tests-cant-be-trusted-180972724/ Congratulations, John! You represent your department and university well!
Please join me in welcoming JJ Boehm to his new role as interim executive director of University Communications, effective Aug. 1. JJ has lead media relations at SVSU for the past 16 years and has in many ways been the face (and voice) of our university in the community. JJ brings to this role extensive experience in marketing, digital and print media, community engagement and external affairs. I have every confidence that he will lead the University Communications team well.
Last week, two members of our staff represented SVSU at the Military Credit Equivalency Showcase in Lansing. Beth Alford, director of Military Student Affairs, and Courtney Fylling, assistant registrar, joined their peers from Davenport, Ferris State, Mott Community College and others to share our progress in military credit equivalency since receiving the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency grant earlier this year. Thank you, Beth and Courtney, for representing our university well and for all of your efforts in making SVSU a “Best For Vets” institution.
Earlier this week, SVSU hosted a first responders training that took place in the University Village housing complex. Kochville Township Fire Department and other emergency responders conducted training that simulated a response to an explosion with casualties. SVSU staff and students volunteered for this training, which helped emergency responders prepare in the event of an actual emergency. Thank you to our housing staff as well as all students and staff who volunteered for the training!
This week, the Master of Science in Occupational Therapy Program is sponsoring a stroke camp for stroke survivors in the community. The camp is facilitated by SVSU occupational therapy faculty, staff and graduate students. Therapy is aimed toward “Skills for the Job of Living,” which includes physical rehabilitation and psychological/social support, activities of daily living, leisure/play and socialization throughout each of the six-hour days. The therapy provided is skilled and individualized for each participant.
Eighteen adults and two children who have experienced a stroke at least six months prior are participating in the camp. Twenty SVSU students are facilitating the assessment and treatment sessions with oversight from faculty and staff such as Dr. Donald Earley, Aricka Schweitzer, Kadie Schultz and Jill Ewend.
Save the date for a busy weekend in the Saginaw community next week. Three SVSU-supported events are to take place, including Friday Night Live’s "Abba Magic” Night, the India Fair and the African Cultural Festival. Friday Night Live will take place on Aug. 9 in Morley Plaza at 5:30 p.m. Details on all Friday Night Live concerts can be found here: http://www.prideinsaginaw.org/events/friday_night_live/
The annual India Fair will take place at the Saginaw Soccer Complex on McCarty Road on Saturday, Aug. 10. The fair opens at 11 a.m. and runs until 7 p.m. Admission is $3, with children under five receiving admission for free. Click here for more information.
Finally, the 51st annual African Cultural Festival will take place on Lapeer Road at Morley School Park from Friday, Aug. 9, through Sunday, Aug. 11. This long-standing festival brings both education and entertainment together throughout the weekend. A schedule of events can be found here.
You have likely already received an e-mail invitation to the annual Welcome Back Picnic, taking place on Aug. 22. Liana and I certainly hope to see each of you there to celebrate the start of a new academic year. Summer has gone by especially fast this year, but we look forward to welcoming students, and each of you, back to campus! As a reminder, brief remarks and an introduction to new faculty and staff will take place on the same day at 4 p.m. in the Malcolm Field Theatre for Performing Arts. RSVP for the picnic by clicking here.
Have a great weekend, and Go Cards!