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I'm a Hornet from Interim President Jackie Vietti

September 23, 2015
  • During a visit to Kansas, U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran spent about an hour on our campus, visiting with Dr. Jackie Vietti, interim president; Dr. David Cordle, provost and vice president for academic affairs; Dr. Jim Williams, vice president for student affairs; and Dr. Ken Weaver, dean of The Teachers College. A highlight was a visit to the Memorial to Fallen Educators on the north end of our campus. The senator plans to introduce a Senate bill that would make the memorial the NATIONAL Memorial to Fallen Educators. For media stories, go to: For photos from the visit:
  • A big thank-you to the Emporia Fire Department, which prepared and presented a proclamation to the Emporia City Commission on Sept. 2 to declare September Campus Fire Safety Month. Carrie Boettcher, Emporia State’s emergency manager, attended the meeting to show our support. Although Campus Fire Safety Month is a nationwide observance, we at Emporia State are proud to work with the Emporia Fire Department year-round to educate Hornet Nation about fire safety.

  • During Campus Fire Safety Month, 35 international Emporia State students attended the Fan Lin Safety Program on Sept. 15 to learn about fire safety, pedestrian safety, severe weather and extreme hot and cold. They also learned about our campus Police and Safety department as well as personal safety information. This program is presented through a partnership between Emporia State and the Emporia police and fire departments.

  • Our art therapy program celebrated its new facility on Sept. 14. The program, housed in the Department of Counselor Education at The Earl Center, is one of the oldest art therapy programs in the country. Art therapy, as a field, is 46 years old, and ESU’s program has existed for 43 years, and is oldest continually running, university-based master's in art therapy degree program in the U.S. For more on the celebration:

  • The cross-country team competes in its only home meet on Friday at Jones Park in Emporia. To follow the team through the season, go to:

  • Tomorrow, the Office of International Education will host Fun on the Field from 5 to 7 p.m. This event aims to provide a social opportunity for new international students and kick off the academic year by providing opportunities for new international students to build community and interact with other community members.

  • Congratulations to Dr. Steve Catt (Chair, Department of Communications and Theatre). Dr. Catt was inducted into the KSCA Hall of Fame for Secondary and Higher Ed Speech/Communication/Theatre Educators on Sept. 11 in Topeka at the annual meeting of Kansas Speech Communication Association.

  • This fall, we welcomed 151 new international students in our Fall 2015 cohort. The new cohort brought a great deal of diversity and increased to 59 the total number of countries represented on campus. Among others, new countries that are now represented at Emporia State University include Belarus, Ecuador, Georgia, Panama and Paraguay.

  • Over 300 middle- and high-school students came to campus Sept. 17 for Constitution Day activities organized by the Department of Social Sciences. The day included sessions in the Memorial Union, ice cream floats and a pep rally in Welch Stadium with a visit from Corky.

  • ESU’s physical education methods class hosted Outdoor Activity Day on Sept. 16 at the intramural fields and old softball fields. More than 100 Emporia Middle School students participated in a variety of activities including fishing, playing lawn darts, a variation of disc golf, sockey (a blend of soccer and hacky-sack) and a relay water challenge. For more:

  • The Comite Paraguay-Kansas (based in Asuncion, Paraguay) visited Emporia State University as part of a tour to Regent universities in Kansas. The Comite is the most vital connection for all of Emporia State University’s academic initiatives in Paraguay as well as student recruitment activities.

  • Five individuals and a national runner-up women's cross country team will be inducted into the Emporia State Athletic Hall of Honor on Saturday, October 24 as part of Homecoming festivities at Emporia State. The inductees will join a group of 185 former student-athletes, coaches and administrators and 15 teams who have distinguished themselves, the University and their professions through their athletic achievement. For more:

  • An art forum open to the public on Sept. 9 featured Kristina Estell, who recently awarded the 2015 McKnight Visual Artist Fellowship. 

  • Follow us! The Teachers College at Emporia State has two social media accounts. The public Facebook group is The Teachers College at Emporia State University. Follow the college on Twitter @TTC_ESU.

  • Emporia State Police and Safety and Emergency Management coordinated a multiagency incident action plan to protect and provide a safe environment for demonstrators, observers and the public for the March On Emporia event on Sept. 15.

  • We have established new academic partnerships with two universities in Finland. University of Helsiki and Jyvaskyla University joined the ESU network of partner universities. Our students now will be able to engage in semester-long academic exchanges, student-teaching and participate in summer programs in Finland. Similarly, the agreements allow for short-term faculty exchanges. These agreements are the result of a visit to the universities in May by Dr. Ken Weaver, dean of the Teachers College, and Dr. Gonzalo Bruce, dean of International Education.

  • Experts representing Kansas law enforcement and crime laboratories presented a panel discussion on campus Sept. 14. The speakers were Gary Howell and Allan Hamm of the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office Criminalistics Laboratory, Dr. Timothy Rohrig of the Sedgwick County Regional Forensic Science Center, Linda Netzel of the Kansas City Police Crime Laboratory and Michael Van Stratton of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation. The event was organized by Dr. Melissa Bailey, interim director of the master of science in forensic science program.

  • Lots of Hornets are buzzing and working in William Allen White Library on campus. Since ACES, Academic Center for Excellence and Success, opened at the start of the semester, we have seen a 16 percent increase in people using the library, based on the counters on our front door. These counts continue to include people taking advantage of the Learning Commons that is open 24/7.

  • The School of Business, with the partnership of Career Services, hosted a number of employers to campus in the past weeks. Emporia State students had the opportunity to network with recruiters from Koch Industries, Target, FHL Bank and Sherwin-Williams.

  • Welcome to Warqaa Albakirat, our new foreign language teaching assistant for Arabic language this Fall 2015. She is teaching Arabic language and Arab cultures during the fall and spring semesters. In addition, she will take graduate-level courses.

  • On Aug. 29, Smoky Valley alumni, friends and guests enjoyed time together at Blue Skye Brewery in Salina. Special guests from Emporia State University included Dr. Brent Thomas, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Updates included information on the new forensic science program at Emporia State University and an announcement of a major milestone in the Now & Forever campaign.     

  • Thirty-six Hornets will study abroad during the fall semester. The number includes students who engage in semester-long exchanges, short-term faculty-led programs and student-teaching experiences abroad.

  • The IT Learning Technologies Team welcomes three new staff members. Michael Sapenoff, who serves as a video production specialist supporting academics, marketing and athletics, including the new video board at the stadium, comes to ESU from Benedictine College in Atchison. Adam Sergeant, who was formerly a member of the Helpdesk support team moves over to become the learning spaces coordinator. Adam will be assisting in the update of more than 170 learning spaces across campus over the next several years. And Dr. Anna Catterson, who comes from Butler Community College where she served as the director of the IT Academy (workforce development program), will be an instructional designer and researcher for Learning Technologies.

  • A whole host of folks on campus were awarded a ceremonial game ball after our football home opener that began Thursday, Sept. 10, and was picked up Saturday, Sept. 12 after a 42-hour halftime brought about by severe weather that suspended the game. Many people who normally work on our games thought they would have the Saturday to themselves; instead they were back at the field. Athletic Director Kent gave the ball to Kimberly Reyes of Sodexo, for getting concessions up and running on Saturday after the EHS game on Friday night; Mark Runge and the Physical Plant, for getting the stadium cleaned and ready to go on such short notice; Don Weast and Pete Euler, for getting our PA, clock operators and chain crew back on Saturday; Michael Sapenoff and Patrick Resa, for the great job introducing the video board to our team and fans, not only on Thursday, but back with limited personnel on Saturday.  (I’ve gotten nothing but great compliments on the board, by the way.); and Bill Woodworth and the Marching Hornets, when scores of student-musicians volunteered their time and talents on Saturday to help bring the stadium to life with their energy and music.

  • Congratulations to Carol Russell, Heather Caswell and Fletch Russell, who had their presentation proposal, “Children Inspire Glass Project at Emporia State University,” accepted for presentation at the 14th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Education, Jan. 3 through 6, 2016, in Honolulu, Hawaii. For more on the project:

  • The trio will also present the Children Inspire Glass project at Baker University on Nov. 13 with an art show opening that same afternoon. The show will be displayed in Baker’s Holt-Russell Gallery from Nov. 2 through Dec. 15.

  • Emporia State University kicked off its presence at the Kansas State Fair during the 19th Annual Summervill Fan Fair on Friday, Sept. 11. University guests included Interim President Dr. Jackie Vietti, Director of Theatre Dr. Jim Bartruff and Track and Field coaches Steve and Erin Blocker. The ESU booth is staffed by volunteers and features new university community signage in partnership with the Emporia Convention and Visitors Bureau. 

  • Dr. Jim Persinger, 2015 Roe R. Cross Distinguished Professor and interim chair of the Department of Psychology, was quoted in an article about ACT test scores in the Topeka Capital-Journal. To read the article:

  • IGI Global published a chapter written by Carol Russell in “Educational Perspectives on Nonverbal Learning Disability in Children and Young Adults.” Russell’s chapter was titled “Understanding Nonverbal Learning Disabilties in Postsecondary Students with Spina Bifida.”

  • Staff from William Allen White Library and the Office of International Education hosted Game Night, an event that creates an opportunity for international students to interact with domestic students through games.



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