Ad Astra with Michael Shonrock


  • Back to the Bellwether

    April 16, 2014

    Whenever I tell someone I’m from Kansas, I always get this all-knowing-somewhat-familiar-apologetic-slight-raise-of-the-...

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  • To the Future, through Difficulty

    March 31, 2014

    Imagine it’s 2063. A copy of this column has been sealed inside a stainless steel box hidden in the lobby of the Memorial ...

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  • Coach Kramer's Biggest Play

    March 19, 2014

    Earlier this year our community celebrated the life and legacy of one of the winningest football coaches in our history — ...

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  • Moving at the Speed of Students

    February 26, 2014

    What if I told you I could make an ordinary postcard come to life just by waving my smart phone over it like a magic wand? Are you...

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  • Athens on the Plains

    February 12, 2014

    Vachel Lindsay was a poet who, a hundred years ago, gave us a book about walking across Kansas. I introduced you to Lindsay in my ...

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  • A Landscape of Character

    January 29, 2014

    There’s something about the Kansas landscape that shapes character. Just take a walk in the Flint Hills, and you’ll ...

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  • Just Call Me Michael

    January 17, 2014

    Let me tell you about the time, in my early days as president, when I tried to hire a student and was told, “We do not hire ...

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  • Under a Lucky Star

    December 31, 2013

    Search the Emporia State University campus on Google Earth and you will find a little surprise. Look carefully on the rooftop of ...

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  • Emporia State's Own Jackie Robinson

    December 18, 2013

    Let me tell you about a remarkable photograph in the archives here at Emporia State, of the school’s first baseball team. ...

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  • Making Hope A Habit

    November 21, 2013

    Back in April, Shane Lopez—the world’s leading expert on the psychology of  hope—came to Emporia State to ...

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  • Kansans Forged Vision of Peace in Midst of War

    November 15, 2013

    When the idea for Emporia State was conceived by the Kansas Legislature in 1863, the country was, as Abraham Lincoln would put it ...

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  • Expectations

    November 1, 2013

    Last spring I spent a day driving around Kansas with our Dean of the Teachers College, Ken Weaver. We were visiting ESU alumni. ...

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  • Homecoming

    October 25, 2013

    When I left home for college, my grandfather drove me from Chicago to Macomb, Ill., in his 1970s beige Chrysler Newport. My ...

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  • The Classroom of Life

    October 15, 2013

    Not too long ago I learned to tweet. I sent 12 messages in my fledging month of tweeting – six of them on the first day.&...

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  • Our Sense of Place

    September 25, 2013

    When I’m having one of those days, I like to go for a drive in the Flint Hills. I find there is always a new discovery over ...

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  • Practicing Optimism

    September 11, 2013

    I’m a natural optimist. Or, perhaps I should say I’m a practicing optimist, because optimism is a talent that must be ...

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  • Who Is Your Rosa Parks?

    August 28, 2013

    I was asked this question recently.  It made me pause to consider the contributions of one individual to all of humanity. ...

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  • The Value of an Education

    August 16, 2013

    My grandfather had an 8th grade education. Grandmother was a self-taught nurse. Not the kind of nurse you want if you really need ...

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    July 31, 2013

      Let me tell you about one of my favorite movies. “Under the Tuscan Sun” is the story of a writer, played by ...

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  • Welcome Home

    July 10, 2013

    We’d been waiting about nine hours, sequestered in a Topeka hotel room knowing that somewhere in the city were two other ...

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