Last weekend, we had the pleasure of joining our colleagues as we celebrated this year's recipients at the annual Alumni Awards Celebration. Six alumni from our five colleges were recognized Friday evening for their career accomplishments, including the Honorable Manvel Trice III ('98) from the College of Arts & Behavioral Sciences, James Terry ('86) from the College of Business & Management, Rachel Snell ('02, '05) from the College of Education, Dr. Ashley Holdsworth ('08) and Mary Draves ('94) from the College of Science, Engineering & Technology and Stacy Klump ('96) from the College of Health & Human Services. We also presented the Veteran Alumni award to Douglas Szczepanski ('11), Young Alumni award to Olivia Arnold ('15) and Future Alumni award to Danielle Slonac. As we approach December commencement ceremonies, this celebration reminds us of what our students are capable of achieving and the number of possibilities that await them upon graduation. There is no doubt that we graduate some of the most outstanding professionals in the region, state and country. Congratulations to Jim Dwyer, Pam Wegener, Sue Brasseur and Hannah Maine in the Alumni Relations Office on a successful evening.
Our College of Education has been instrumental in providing high-quality teacher candidates to Saginaw Public Schools through both the Accelerated Certification Residency (ACR) program and the traditional student teaching program. The college has been innovative and collaborative in identifying ways to prepare teacher candidates and establishing processes for placing those individuals in classrooms. Six ACR candidates are currently placed in Saginaw Public Schools, providing high quality instruction for students in the district; our students benefit from the support offered through faculty at SVSU and veteran teachers in their host schools. Several traditional education students will also be placed in residencies in Saginaw Public Schools next semester. Candidates who are hired by Saginaw Public Schools after the completion of their certification or degree program will receive sign-on bonuses from the school district and some of the most competitive teacher salaries in the state – an outstanding incentive as we work to alleviate the teacher shortage for districts throughout Michigan. Thank you to Saginaw Public Schools superintendent Ramont Roberts and our colleagues in the College of Education that have assisted in this partnership.
Please join me in congratulating Jeremy Bockelman, regional director of the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center, who was recognized last week by the Michigan Manufacturers Association as a 2018 Emerging Leader. The Emerging Leader Award is given to an individual who has made exceptional contributions to the manufacturing industry in the last decade and who has shown promising potential as a manufacturing leader well into the future. Bockelman has served as regional director of the MMTC on our campus for nearly 10 years. His colleagues often note his selfless leadership and dedication to his team. No doubt this is a well-deserved award. Congratulations, once again, to Jeremy.
This week, a delegation of SVSU students, faculty and staff are visiting two economic development corporations in Brazil to explore public and private partnership opportunities; they will also be presenting on such opportunities, as well as on educational partnerships. The group, hosted by the Universidade do Vale Itajai, is in the state of Santa Catarina to meet with university experts, local government officials, local businesses and economic development organizations. Joining the group are business students Sydney Meadows and Kyle Cameron, Tony Bowrin, dean of the Scott L. Carmona College of Business & Management, and two members of our management faculty: Danilo Sirias and Luke Voegel. Ju Yu Chen from the Office of Global Engagement presented a demonstration and overview of her artwork. Dottie Millar, professor of teacher education, and Jan Lampman from the Arc of Midland presented on issues related to special education. Hali Motley, project manager for the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center, is also with the group, as are two representatives from local economic development organizations. This is a great opportunity for our institution to connect with organizations abroad, and I thank those individuals who have made the trip to Brazil to positively represent SVSU.
We were pleased to welcome Katherine Lasher to our campus this afternoon to address our Title IX committee on emerging issues regarding sexual assault on college campuses and other items related to Title IX. Katherine is the Title IX coordinator and affirmative action and equal opportunity officer at Central Michigan University. As always, we remain committed to preparing our students, faculty and staff to prevent and respond to sexual assault on campus, and we welcome opportunities to collaborate with other Michigan public universities on best practices to do so. Thank you to our Title IX Coordinator Mamie Thorns and the entire committee of SVSU faculty and staff who have dedicated their time to this important issue as we work to keep our campus safe for everyone.
In addition, students and staff involved with our Bringing in the Bystander program announced the winners of a contest that drew student-produced public service announcement videos aimed at strengthening the campus’ sexual assault prevention education efforts. NBC 25 covered the story.
More than 400 high school students from eight regional high schools visited campus for the 43rd annual Foreign Language Day last Thursday. The annual competition, which has been held on our campus and hosted by the Department of Modern Foreign Languages since 1976, features student performances in categories including song, dance and skit in French or Spanish. Foreign Language Day also includes an international awareness contest, which highlights the importance of foreign language study for today's students. Thank you to the Modern Foreign Languages Department Chair Monica Dix and the Office of International & Advanced Studies for working to bring this event to campus year after year. We certainly look forward to welcoming these talented students to SVSU.
Congratulations to John Kaczynski, director of governmental affairs, on placing first in the region for this year's Real Men Wear Pink fundraising competition. He came in second in Michigan, and our Great Lakes Bay Region came in 3rd overall, behind only Metro Detroit and Oakland County. This 10-week competition is hosted by the American Cancer Society each year and aims to raise funds for breast cancer research, as well as resources for patients and their families. John broke the regional fundraising record by bringing in over $20,000 through social media and various "pink" events held throughout the region. John is a fantastic advocate for the American Cancer Society and was an outstanding representative for SVSU throughout the campaign. Congratulations once again and thank you to all the SVSU students, faculty and staff who contributed to this worthwhile cause.
Congratulations to our men’s soccer team on reaching the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Division II national tournament. The team defeated Ashland 4-3 in overtime and host Southern Indiana 4-1 last weekend; they play Ohio Valley in Hays, Kansas for the Midwest regional championship at 5 p.m. on Thursday. Women's soccer ended their NCAA tournament run, losing 1-0 to Walsh last Friday. On the men’s side, Omar Sinclair was named to the D2CCA All-Midwest Region First Team as a defender, while Michael Shaikly and Azaad Liadi earned All-Midwest Region Second Team honors. For the women, Molly Vanderhoff was named to the All-Midwest Region First Team as a midfielder while Valentina Giambanco earned All-Midwest Region Second Team plaudits.
Our men’s and women’s cross country teams will seek to qualify for the NCAA Division II championships as they race in the Midwest regionals at Hillsdale this weekend. The men are currently No. 2 in the region and No. 10 in the nation; the women are No. 6 in the region.
Our football team finished the regular season with an overall record of 8-3 after a 24-17 overtime victory over Davenport last Saturday. Junior defensive end David Still was honored as GLIAC Special Teams Player of the Week and three football players have received first team All-Conference honors: senior linebacker Michael Alexander, junior defensive lineman Heath Williams and sophomore wide receiver Chad Galliard. I congratulate the entire team on a successful season.
Women's volleyball also ended its post-season with a loss to No. 1 seed Ferris State in the GLIAC tournament last Friday. Two players earned first team All-GLIAC honors: Emily Friesl and Sarah Tabit. Both are juniors; I look forward to seeing them and their teammates build upon their successful 19-10 record this season.
Swimming and diving continues a positive start to their regular season. The 2-1 teams will compete at the Wabash Invitational this weekend.
Our men's and women's basketball teams had their moments, but both came up short last weekend. The men dropped contests to Bellarmine and Indianapolis, while the women lost to Bellarmine and Southern Indiana. The men earned their first win, 88-78 over Alma Tuesday night. The men will play at Findlay this Saturday at 3 p.m., and the women will play again next Wednesday, Nov. 21 at home against Ohio Dominican.
Best of luck to all competitors this weekend and congratulations to our fall student-athletes on a great semester.