Weekly News for Faculty, Staff and Friends of the Worcester State College Community


Fairlawn Foundation Clinical Skills
Nursing Laboratory Dedicated

Noted Poet and Activist to Return to Campus



Sovereign Bank Donates to IUI Hunger Program

Visual and Performing Arts Department to Host Faculty Art Exhibition

David St. Martin and Robin Vario Honored with
Commonwealth Outstanding Performance Award

Students to Hold Public Forum on Informed Voting

Thriller of a Weekend Homecoming/Family Weekend

Senior Capping and Fall Honors Convocation


Professor Garcia Guevara Explores Thirty Years
of Military Dictatorship in El Salvador


Staff: Mandatory Survey About Your Commuting Habits

Chorale Annual Membership Drive

Upcoming LASC Workshops



WSC e-news General Info



Lisa Krissoff Boehm (Urban History) presented a paper on working with volunteers in community oral history projects at the annual meeting of the Oral History Association in Pittsburgh on October 17. She also served on the prize committee for the best journal article written in the field of oral history in the previous year. She was asked to serve as a peer reviewer for the journal, International Review of Social History, on Cambridge University Press.

An article that Allison Dunn (Physical Geography) coauthored, High sensitivity of peat decomposition to climate change through water-table feedback," with Takeshi Ise, Steven Wofsy, and Paul Moorcroft was highlighted in the New York Times Science section on October 14.  Click here to read the NY Times summary.  The article investigates how climate change may affect the carbon balance of peat bogs in the subarctic.   and was originally published in Nature Geoscience on October 12. Click here to read the article in Nature Geoscience.

Fortunata Makene (Sociology) was interviewed with Voice of American Swahili Service on a program which aired on Sunday. You can listen at www.voanews.com/swahili then click on jioni. The program featured Professor Makene and three other Tanzanian women discussing how modernization has affected the traditional kitchen party women only education given to young women when they reached puberty.

Adam Zahler (Visual & Performing Arts) directed the staged reading of a new play by Alan Brody as part of the Catalyst Collaborative @ MIT, a collaboration between MIT and Underground Railway Theater.  Discussion following the readings on October 17 and 20 featured conversations with Nobel Laureates Frank Wilczek and Jerome Friedman.




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Sovereign Bank Donates to IUI Hunger Program

Sovereign Bank has donated $5,000 to the Worcester State College Intergenerational Urban Institute to help implement a new program: Ending Hunger Together.  The program, which was one of the first in the state to receive support from Governor Deval Patrick's new Commonwealth Corps volunteer program, will develop a model Intergenerational Fellows Program that creates hunger awareness while providing active roles to people of all ages in fighting it.  The College will provide food stamp outreach and application assistance to elders, assist with the outreach and management of volunteers, create an outreach program to involve urban schools, and develop and maintain a new hunger website that connects people across the Commonwealth in the fight against hunger.

Presenting the check are James T.  Curran, senior vice president/regional executive, and Karen E. Dumas, vice president/relationship manager, from Sovereign Bank to Maureen Power, executive director of the Intergenerational Urban Institute, and Dr. Janelle C. Ashley, president of the college.




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Visual and Performing Arts Department
to Host Faculty Art Exhibition

Please join the faculty of the Visual and Performing Art Department in celebrating the first Worcester State College faculty art show in the gallery in the Ghosh Center ST113 on Thursday, October 30, for the Opening Reception from 5-7 pm. After opening night the gallery will be open to the public on Tuesdays-Fridays from 2-5 p.m.( or by appointment) until December 10. Light refreshments will be served at the opening and all are welcome.  


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David St. Martin and Robin Vario Honored with

Commonwealth Outstanding Performance Award

Fitchburg State College, Mount Wachusett Community College, Quinsigamond Community College and Worcester State College recently honored their recipients of the 2008 Commonwealth Outstanding Performance Awards.

The Commonwealth Citation for Outstanding Performance is given to executive branch and higher education employees of the Commonwealth who have demonstrated exemplary work performance. The collaborative awards recognition ceremony, held October 20, was organized by the human resources group of Central Links, a public higher education alliance comprised of the four colleges. Frederick W. Clark, Jr., chairman of the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education, was the guest speaker.


The hearts of our public colleges beat solely to advance opportunity for the cultural, social and economic well-being of our students and thereby benefit our region, our state and our nation, Clark said. Without our public colleges, those opportunities simply would not exist.

President Janelle Ashley recognized David St. Martin and Robin Vario.


St. Martin, of Whitinsville, is emergency management coordinator/technical service coordinator for the Worcester State College police department. St. Martin played an active role in scheduling and documenting all training for recently armed college police officers as well as for the colleges emergency response team and incident command training. He maintains and updates the colleges emergency response management plan and schedules exercises involving the emergency response team.


Vario, of Worcester, last served Worcester State College as a staff assistant in the financial aid department. In this role, she investigated and implemented a lender service for all alternative loans, providing invaluable service to students, particularly during a fluctuating financial aid picture in recent years.



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Students to Hold Public Forum on Informed Voting

Worcester State College students taking a course in Media Criticism are holding a public forum, "Generation Y Students at WSC Seek to Find Truth in '08 Debate: Informed Voting During Fiscally Uncertain Times," in the exhibit area of the Student Center on Thursday, October 30, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. For this generation of voters, the emphasis is less on rocking the vote than informing the vote.  In the last election, television served as the primary source of information for Americans, with advertisements having greater influence than news.  This trend is something todays youth wants to change.  As student Sean Young of Worcester explains, I dont want to be bombarded with negative campaign ads.  What I need is accurate issues-based media coverage.

AUDIO PODCAST:  Listen to Dr. Julie Frechette and student Matt DeCiero discuss how Gen Y students seek to find truth in the 2008 campaign coverage on WTAG.



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'Thriller of a Weekend' Homecoming & Family Weekend
November 1-2, 2008

Homecoming 2008 will include fun for the entire family. The WSC campus community is invited to take part in all the festivities. This year's Homecoming will feature Mind Reader and Psychic Jim Spinnato. To see a full schedule visit



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Senior Capping and Fall Honors Convocation

Senior Capping is a special ceremony held each fall at WSC. This annual event formally recognizes members of the senior class, marks the beginning of the new academic year, and celebrates scholarship recipients. The tradition also marks the first time that seniors may wear their academic caps and gowns. All seniors, faculty, administrators and stage participants are invited to take part in the processional march wearing the traditional academic gown. Family and friends are also encouraged to share in this significant passage from underclassman to senior.

This years ceremony will take place on Sunday, November 2, at 2 p.m.  Faculty and administrators wishing to be part of the line of march should be robed and ready to begin by 1:50 p.m. Robing for faculty and administrators is in Room 104 in the Sullivan Building.  This years keynote speaker is James Polito 86.


The senior class officers have been planning this event since the summer.  I hope your schedule permits you to share this long-standing WSC tradition with them.  Please call Sheila Jones at ext. 8077 or e-mail Sheila.jones@worcester.edu if you are planning to attend. Volunteers are needed to act as greeters (bank-time opportunity).  Please contact Sheila Jones at ext. 8077 for details/instructions.



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Professor Garcia Guevara Explores Thirty Years
of Military Dictatorship in El Salvador

Barbara Zang, Ph.D.

The question that propels Aldo Garcia Guevara's research about the role of military regimes in El Salvador during 1930-1960 is one that may resonate today in the United States:  How do people come to support political leaders who are not acting in their best interests?

Its a complicated question, with complicated answers.

Guevara, who studied the origins of Catholic social thought in Costa Rica and El Salvador for his masters thesis, was intrigued by something he kept encountering. 

There was widespread nostalgia among the middle class for the days of the military dictatorship, he said. They told me there was no crime, that they felt safer during those days.

Guevara wondered whether that was, in fact, true and pursued that question at the level of national politics for his dissertation. 

The question remained about the incidence of crime at the local level.  A 2007-08 mini-grant, Justice and Social Control in a Military Dictatorship: El Salvador 1930-1960, enabled him to travel to El Salvador to find out.

He used court and police records and newspapers in San Salvador to investigate crime and safety issues in that period.

The more I looked into it, I found that this was less true than people believed, Guevara said. 

The military regimes of El Salvador used the language of law and order to turn themselves into dictators, he said. They did this by manipulating the newspapers, using propaganda to sell themselves and their authority to people.   

This was a deliberate politics of misinformation, he noted, and it worked better in San Salvador   than in the rural areas outside the capital.

What's so interesting about El Salvador, he said, was the ability of the government to flat out lie to people without any sense of irony.

As he explored public records and newspaper accounts during the summer of 2007, Guevara discovered something else that seemed counterintuitive.

In 1932, the military killed some 15,000 to 20,000 indigenous peasants, he said.  Given this, I thought there would be many more references to race relations in court records, but I found that class was more evident than race in these documents.  

He said that historians of Brazil have noted a similar phenomenon.  Race certainly affects judicial decisions, but it rarely appears in court proceedings. Those who control the institutions and record keeping look to deny the impact of race.                                                               

Guevara, an assistant professor in his third year at Worcester State, is analyzing data from that summers research. He hopes to submit a manuscript to the Journal of Latin American Studies based on his work. There is probably enough material for a book, he said.

Meanwhile, this research is an exploration, in the broadest sense, of his past.

I was born in El Salvador and still have some family there, he said.  His roots and those of the country are entwined.




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    Worcester State College (WSC) and The Commonwealth of Massachusetts are both increasingly pursuing greener practices to be more environmentally responsible and more cost efficient. WSC implemented several environmentally friendly initiatives including installation of photovoltaic panels on the roof of the Learning Resource Center,  single stream recycling, use of biodiesel fuel in grounds equipment and water conservation projects, to name a few. The Massachusetts Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) is promoting its Rideshare initiative to reduce use of fossil fuels in transportation.  To that end, they require state agencies, including colleges, to survey students and staff about their transportation habits.  Please complete this brief one to two minute survey, about your commuting habits last week (October 20-24). {Note: Use Internet Explorer browser.} Visit https://community.worcester.edu and click on "Staff can access the survey here."



    The Chorale of Worcester State College would like to appeal to the generosity of the Worcester State community, as they work hard to earn their concert tour to Portugal in May.  Please become a "Friend of Chorale," by donating to their annual membership drive.  In return, the Chorale will list you in all programs and on our website as a generous supporter.  Letters have been sent out to everyone, but if you lost yours, please make your check, of any amount,  payable to "Worcester State College Chorale,"  and send to Dr. Christie Nigro, c/o Department of Visual and Performing Arts.


    Also, if you are a person who likes to shop online, please buy your items through the Chorale's Online Shopping Mall.  Simply go to:  www.visitourmall.com/wscchorale and find over 500 stores from which you can buy nearly anything.  The site is secure, and the Chorale receives varying percentages of the purchase price at no additional cost to you.  You do not have to sign in or do anything complicated, but the group gets paid!  Consider doing your holiday shopping on our site.  Some of the stores are Best Buy, Walmart, K-Mart, Kohls, Target, Borders, and Barnes and Noble, to mention just a few.

    Finally, please check out the Chorale's recently updated website at:  www.wschorale.com

    The Center for Teaching and Learning and LASC would like to invite you to attend the second part of a two-part workshop series led by Dr. Andrew G. De Rocco.  Attendance at the first session is not necessary for participation in session two.  Discussion will include examination of a multidisciplinary approach to LASC at the program versus course level and course design for LASC versus the major.  Breakout sessions and exercises will be focused on the design and/or redesign of student-centered courses not driven by the needs of the major or course content but focused on alignment of course specific SLOs with the overall learning objectives of LASC as well as the more detailed student learning objectives in one or more of the LASC content areas.

    MAC:  Math Across the Curriculum
    Wednesday, November 19, 3 - 4:15 p.m.
    South Auditorium, Student Center
    Details will be forthcoming.

    If you have a specific LASC related topic(s) you would like addressed or are interested in leading or co-leading a workshop on a specific LASC area, please contact Bonnie Orcutt at borcutt@worcester.edu or extension 8750.

    LASC Team Site:

    LASC documents and other LASC related information will be available at www.worcester.edu/teamsites/LASC/default.aspx.


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Welcome to...

Kim Albro
Clerk III, Admissions

Kimberly Oikle
Staff Assistant/Financial Aid

Department Change

Kyung-Im Noh, Staff Assistant/Data Base Coordinator/Research Analyst in
Institutional Research and Kenneth Smith, Director of Institutional
Research now report to Information Technologies. Both will be
relocated to Room 316 in the LRC.


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**Please Note - Links to online newspaper articles may no
longer be available after a certain period of time.**

5th Worcester rivals agree on main issues
MassLive.com (
Excerpt:  He is pursuing a bachelor's degree in business administration at Worcester State College. Earlier this year, he lost in a bid for re-election to the ...

West Bridgewater's Norman Everett a study in determination
EnterpriseNews.com (10/21/08)
Excerpt: The routine is the same every time he prepares for a race with the Worcester State College cross-country and track teams. ...

Monday, October 27, 2008



Tues., Oct. 28

Energy Efficiency Workshop
Sullivan Building, Eager Auditorium
6:30 p.m.

W. Soccer vs.
UMass Dartmouth

Athletic Field, 7 p.m.


Thurs., Oct. 30

Public Forum on
Informed Voting

Student Center, Exhibit Area
10-11:15 a.m.

Faculty Art Exhibition
Opening Reception

Ghosh Science Center,
1st Floor, Art Gallery
5 - 7 p.m.

Pilon Poetry Awards/
Open Mic

Student Center, Blue Lounge
7 - 9 p.m.

Fri., Oct. 31

Women's Volleyball @
BSC Halloween Classic

4 p.m., Directions to Bridgewater
State College

Ice Hockey vs. SUNY Canton
5:30 p.m., Horgan Rink, Auburn
Directions to Horgan Rink

Sat., Nov. 1

Thriller of a Weekend
Homecoming/Family Wknd

Cross Country @ Alliance
State College

Stanley Park - Westfield
Directions to Stanley Park

Field Hockey @ Eastern CT
1 p.m., Directions to Eastern CT

W. Soccer @ Salem State
6 p.m., Directions to Salem State


Sun., Nov. 2

Senior Capping & Fall
Honors Convocation

2 p.m., Sullivan Auditorium


Faculty Art Exhibition
Ghosh Science Center
1st Floor Art Gallery
Tues-Fri from 2-5 p.m. (or by appt.)


Tues., Nov. 4

Election Day


Wed., Nov. 5

Anne Feeney Concert
Student Center, Blue Lounge
1:30 p.m. - 2:45 p.m.

Lecture w/National Award
Winning Athlete Mike Green

Student Center, Blue Lounge
7-8:30 p.m.

Tues., Nov. 11

Veterans Day Holiday
No Classes, Offices Closed

Nov. 13-15

WSC Theatre UpClose
presents Lysistrata

Sullivan Auditorium
8 p.m.

Sun., Nov. 16

WSC Theatre UpClose
presents Lysistrata

Sullivan Auditorium
2 p.m.

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