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



Message from President Janelle C. Ashley, WSC Budget Information

Panelists Discuss Historical Triumphs and Challenges of Hunger Relief

Harvard Medical Professor to Speak at WSC



Professor Johnsen Explores One Country's Quest
for Independence through a 'Singing Revolution'


Discounted Tickets and a Chance to Win Dinner at Romas

Research Associateship Program

Collaborative Visiting Fellowship Program

Invitation Fellowship Programs for Research in Japan

Call for Proposals - AAC&U Conference

LASC Update

Grant Lunch Workshops


WSC e-news General Info


Elias Chouki, a student in AR 230 Printmaking, taught by Professor Amaryllis Siniossoglou (Visual and Performing Arts), received the Arches Award for his relief print during the  prestigious Arches Print Competition in Boston. Twelve prints from Worcester State College students were accepted and represented in the show. For more info: http://www.bostonprintmakers.org/07arches.htm

Stephen A. Morreale (Criminal Justice)
presented at the recent conference for the Western Society of Criminology (WSC) in San Diego, Calif.  Professor Morreale presented a paper titled "Is Social Dominance Orientation a Factor in Police Culture." The paper focused on Social Dominance Theory and whether it can inform about police behavior including cynicism and arrogance. Survey research will be focused on police academy recruits, criminal justice students and police officers from New York, New Jersey and New England.  The co-author was
Dr. James McCabe from Sacred Heart University.

Professor Morreale also presented a paper at the WSC Conference with
Dr. Matthew ODeane from Kaplan University and the San Diego District Attorneys Office on the Efficacy of Gang Injunctions.  This paper evaluated past Gang Injunctions for 25 years in southern California to test their effectiveness. The study found that gang violence and calls for service were reduced from 11% to 15% as a result of the injunction and attentive enforcement.  



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A Message from President Janelle C. Ashley
WSC Budget Information

As you know, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts continues to face a severe economic downturn. The projected shortfall for Worcester State Colleges 2010 operating budget is significant, amounting to $4.9 million from FY 2009 levels. Part of this reduction includes an additional college trust fund payment of fringe benefit costs; this reduction does not include any inflation factor added to the Colleges FY 2009 costs.  In the current fiscal year, the College experienced a $1.6 million reduction to the operating budget, as of January 31, 2009.  Although savings have been achieved to balance our current budget situation, they may not be sustainable to cover the projected shortfall for this July.

We all have been reading the daily news updates regarding the federal economic stimulus package.  Worcester State College is watching these deliberations carefully and is committed to participating in any efforts that could further improve our economy and the education of our students.  However, it would not be fiscally responsible to rely on these funds to help put our FY 2010 budget in balance.  If these funds are allocated, they would be temporary in nature and likely be targeted to specific projects and initiatives, and not to address current shortfalls.

Despite these daunting challenges, we must continue to commit ourselves to the Colleges mission, Worcester State College is dedicated to offering high quality, affordable undergraduate and graduate academic programs and to promoting the lifelong intellectual growth, global awareness, and career opportunities of its students.  Now more than ever, we must pull together as a community to identify the most strategic decisions we collectively can make to manage our budget challenge, making as minimal impact on our students as possible.

To do so, I am inviting everyone to participate in this process.  I am requesting that each division form an advisory group to identify areas that could be examined for efficiencies and cost savings within their area.    These ideas and suggestions need to be forwarded to me before March 16th for consideration and review by the ELT.  The Board of Trustees will be informed of the work and suggestions of the advisory committees at their March 23rd meeting.  The division vice presidents will provide additional information on the formation of their respective advisory groups.

At this time, everything is on the table for consideration in our efforts to achieve a balanced budget and meet the needs of our students.  Here is a list of some of strategies that have been examined so far:

  • Cost containment and centralization of budget lines across the college.

  • Evaluation of typical spending patterns and significantly reduce, if not temporarily eliminate, discretionary spending, while maintaining essential cost items.

  • Maintain the frozen status of various positions across all divisions; at this time, there are seven APA vacancies, one AFSCME vacancy, and five tenure track faculty vacancies.

  • Use College reserves on a temporary basis for infrastructure re-investment.  This will free up operating dollars that can be used for the day to day operational expenses of the College. (DHE performance measures require each college campus to spend 5% of tuition and fee related revenues on adaptation and renewal of infrastructure.  In FY 2009 the budget for this was $2.5M.)

  • An increase in student fees for 2009/2010 academic year will be considered.

  • The Colleges current policy will be to avoid general lay off of benefitted employees in lieu of other measures mentioned above.

I know the task before us is not an easy one, but I am confident in the strength and expertise of this colleges faculty and staff.  I look forward to your assistance as we face this challenge together.



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Panelists Discuss the Historical Triumphs and
Challenges of Hunger Relief

On February 11, students from WSC, the Youth Policy Council at South High and members of the community heard the story of hunger in America since the Puritans.  Panelists  Ken Crater, of Community Harvest Project; Tom Conroy, formerly of the Worcester Historical Museum; Steve Corey and Maureen Power, of Urban Studies, explained the triumphs and horrors, the good works and the unmitigated disasters that have characterized hunger relief in Central Mass. in the past 300 years. From pig farms to auctioning off poor people, the audience learned the many ways Worcester tried to take care of its own. The panelists covered the history of indoor and outdoor relief in Worcester and highlighted the development of the Worcester County Food bank and most recently the emergence of Brigham Hill Farm which raises produce to feed hungry people. Controversies over the role government in alleviating hunger, including the current financial bail out, were discussed. 

The forum was brought to life by the exhibit "Got Food?" which is on loan from the Worcester Historical Museum,  and will be available for viewing in the Student Center North/South Auditorium until the end of February. The panelists created the Got Food exhibit and were eager to share their stories, energy and enthusiasm.  If you have questions about the exhibit, contact Steve Corey or Maureen Power.


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Harvard Medical Professor to
Speak at WSC

Faculty in Psychology at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Jim Hopper will speak on "The Marijuana High and How it Works: Cognitive and Brain Processes" on February 26, 2009,
at 11:30 a.m. in the Ghosh Science Center, Multimedia Room 102.

In popularity as a recreation drug, marijuana is second only to alcohol. It is well known that alcohols disinhibition of emotions and impulses accounts for its subjectively experienced benefits (and many of its costs to individuals, families and society). But how do marijuana's effects on the brain create its high? This lecture will present a research-based model of some key cognitive and brain processes behind marijuana intoxication. In a nutshell, the model posits that marijuana causes a kind of cognitive disinhibition that brings both temporary freedom from habitual thoughts and feelings and temporary freedom to have new ideas, perspectives, and experiences.

For additional information, please contact Dr. Amini-Kormi in the
Biology Department at 508-929-8718 or lamini@worcester.edu.


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Professor Johnsen Explores One Country's Quest
for Independence through a 'Singing Revolution'
Barbara Zang, Ph.D.

Most of us enter this world with a scream. Matt Johnsen probably entered with a song.

Music has been an indelible part of Johnsen's life since childhood. I started piano lessons in third grade in Baltimore, he said. In fourth grade, I added the baritone horn.

Johnsen, an assistant professor in the sociology department in his second year at the college, has added instruments and other musical skills to his life. He's played the organ and piano at his church for 30 years---no matter where he has lived. He's directed choirs, too. He currently directs and sings in--- the Worcester Master Singers to Go group.

Its no surprise then to find that his 2008-09 mini-grant project is entitled The Singing Revolution: Music and Social Change.

What is surprising is that the singing revolution he's studying happened in Estonia, which used music to gain its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.

There was not one shot fired, Johnsen said. Nor was a life lost. As someone interested in non-violence and music---I find this an amazing revolution to study.

Estonians publicly sang patriotic songs from 1987 to 1991. At the height of their singing revolution in the summer of 1990, something like 28,000 singers and musicians plus more than 300,000 people listening to them sent a clear message of the desire for Estonian independence.    

These singers kept alive the concept of Estonian nationalism, Johnsen said. You cant imagine that music would have that kind of power, that it could free them from decades of Soviet occupation.

He acknowledges that few Americans know about this revolution. In fact, he didn't know about it until he visited Tallinn, Estonia's capital, about five years ago for a conference. While there, he learned of a singing festival that brings 25,000 singers to one stage. The Estonian Song Festival started in 1869 and occurs every five years at the Tallinn Song Festival Grounds.

For a singer like Johnsen, this sounded like heaven. One question led to another, which led to his discovery of the singing revolution.

I wasn't aware of this social movement that used music to achieve independence, he said.

Fascinated by what he learned, Johnsen began collecting material about the revolution. Tallinn has a museum devoted to the 1987-1991 period of singing.

This summer marks the 20th anniversary of the successful singing revolution, he said. The best choruses in Estonia, 865 of them, will be on that stage at the same time.

Johnsen will be there, too. His mini-grant will support travel to Estonia for a week. He's constructing a sociological interpretation of what happened during the revolution. He hopes to make the story more accessible by publishing articles and making presentations on this nonviolent movement for independence.

Hes already sharing his knowledge with students. He teaches a freshman seminar on Music and Social Change as well as a special topics course in sociology with the same name.

The other part of his mini-grant project is a series of campus events this spring. The theme? Music and Social Change. On March 9, guitarist, singer and composer Jim Scott will perform with Master Singers to Go. Scotts music incorporates elements of the green revolution.

  • March 23, The Power of Song, a movie about the life of Pete Seeger, will be shown. Seeger is in his 90s, and his life exemplifies the use of song in social movements in this country.

  • April 6, singer and songwriter Joe Jencks will relate labor movement history along with the Master Singers to Go.

  • April 13, Worcester States Corey Dolgon, chair of the sociology department, singer and songwriter, will perform.

The series culminates April 27 with a screening of the documentary The Singing Revolution by Jim and Maureen Tusty, which focuses on the Estonian movement for independence.

Check the campus calendar for venues and times for these events.

Should you go to the concerts, know that singing is not only allowed but encouraged.




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    Worcester State College faculty and staff who purchase discounted tickets to the first-ever Worcester State College Night at The Hanover Theatre and opening night of THE RAT PACK IS BACK! on Thursday, March 26, will be entered into a drawing to win dinner for four at Romas, located on Harding Street. A portion of all tickets sold will benefit WSC student scholarships.

    Faculty and staff can buy tickets at the special prices of $52, $42, and $32. (Prices include the restoration and handling fees and a $10 discount.) For show tickets, contact Deb Quinn in the Presidents Office at ext. 8020 or debquinn@worcester.edu. Tickets to the pre-show cocktail reception (cash bar) are sold separately at the Alumni Office. For details, call x8141 or send an email to alumni@worcester.edu. The deadline to buy these discounted tickets is Friday, February 27, 2009.


    The raffle winner will be announced Friday, March 6.


    Agency: National Research Council 

      Next Deadline: May 01, 2009

      Makes awards through agreements with several

      federal agencies for recent Ph.D.s & Sr.

      investigators to engage in basic & applied research

      at over 100 federal labs & research facilities.

      Stipends support research in: chemistry; earth &

      atmospheric sciences; engineering & applied

      sciences; biological, health & behavioral sciences;

      neuroscience; biotech; math; space & planetary

      sciences; & physics. Deadlines are 2/1, 5/1, 8/1, &

      11/1 but not all labs participate in all four

      rounds. See http://www7.nationalacademies.org/rap

      for details. E-mail: rap@nas.edu

      CFDA Number:N/A


      Contact: Research Associateship Programs

                500 Fifth Street, NW

                (Keck 568)

                Washington, DC 20001




      Agency: Social Science Research Council


      Next Deadline: March 20, 2009

      Fellowship for scholars from the Americas to visit

      & engage in collaborative activities with members

      of ESRC-supported projects in the UK, or for UK

      scholars at ESRC-supported projects to visit

      collaborators in the Americas. Applicants should

      have received a Ph.D. in one of the social sciences

      by the time the proposed visiting fellowship

      starts. See http://www.ssrc.org/fellowships/esrc/

      for details. E-mail: visiting-scholars@ssrc.org

      CFDA Number:


      Contact: Program Office

                One Pierrepont Plaza

                15th Floor

                Brooklyn, NY 11201




    Agency: Japan Society for the Promotion of Science

      Next Deadline: May 12, 2009

      Provides short-term & long-term fellowships to

      promote international cooperation & mutual

      understanding in scientific research between Japan

      and other countries. U.S. candidates must either be

      invited by scientists at Japanese institutions or

      be recommended by NIH, the approved nominating

      authority for the U.S.  All fields of the

      humanities, social sciences, & natural sciences are

      accepted. See http://www.jsps.go.jp/english/e-inv/how_set.htm

      for details. E-mail: yama@jspsusa.org

      CFDA Number:N/A


      Contact: Hideyuki Yamaguchi, US Liaison Office

                JSPS Washington Liaison Office

                1800 K Street, NW, Suite 920

                Washington, DC 20006




    Integrative Learning: Addressing the Complexities
    October 22-24, 2009
    Atlanta, Georgia


    Deadline for submission of proposals: March 11, 2009.
    AAC&U's Network for Academic Renewal invites proposals that analyze the purposes, designs, and institutional supports for integrative learning; the assessment of integrative learning; and approaches to helping students
    connect their learning across discrete domains of knowledge.

    Submit your proposal online by filling in each field of the submission form as directed. For more information, please call 202.387.3760 or write to network@aacu.org. Click here for more info.



    1.  Course Submissions:  Please submit your LASC course proposals to ACC by March 1 for guaranteed consideration by the UCC for Fall 2009.  Proposal forms can be found at www.worcester.edu/teamsites/lasc.  To check to make sure the ACC has received and forwarded your proposal to the UCC, please visit www.worcester.edu/teamsites/governance.  Department chairs have received a memo from Rick Kimball, Chair, UCC regarding the governance course approval process.


    2.  Change in Governance Procedures for Course Submissions:  The following change was approved at ACC on 2/10/2009 and is effective immediately:

    In order to expedite the governance process, reduce waste, and reduce confusion, ACC will no longer require a signed hardcopy of proposals being submitted.  The appropriate agents name on the document, sent in an email from a WSC account will suffice.  In the case of proposals requiring department chair approval, only proposals coming from the Chairs email (or that of the Chairs official designee (i.e. department secretary)) will suffice.  This change will only apply to the 2008-2009 year and would need to be reestablished by the 2009-2010 ACC.


    3.  Across the Curriculum and Constitutions Course Proposal Forms:  The course approval rubrics for the Across the Curriculum areas and the Constitutions area will be forthcoming.  Faculty that have already submitted a course proposal requesting approval in one of these areas will have to complete the appropriate rubric and submit it to the ACC.   Please indicate the assigned course proposal tracking number which you can find on the ACC governance site.  Because courses may be selected from the LASC, the major field, or an elective, proposals need to be accompanied by the course proposal document and the appropriate Across the Curriculum or Constitutions course approval rubric.  If you are submitting a course for approval as an Across the Curriculum or Constitutions course AND as a LASC course, you must also submit the appropriate content area rubric and the overarching objectives rubric.


    4.  Faculty Advising Leaders:  The Davis Educational Foundation Grant has provided funding for four faculty advising leaders to take the initiative in facilitating the development of a program of advising for the LASC and to assist and familiarize faculty and others in the use of the degree audit program (currently being developed by Datatel) for on-line advising.  The faculty advising leaders are:


            Charlotte Haller, History and Political Science

            Richard Kimball, Psychology

            Patricia Marshall, Languages and Literature

            Daniel Shartin, Philosophy

    Faculty, staff and/or administrators interested in working directly with the faculty advising leaders, should contact Bonnie Orcutt at  borcutt@worcester.edu.


    5.  Assessment Fellow:  The Academic Affairs Office has provided funding for a faculty assessment fellow, Elena Braynova, Computer Science, to work with the faculty on facilitating the development of an assessment program for the LASC.  Faculty interested in participating in the development of an assessment program for the LASC should contact Bonnie Orcutt at borcutt@worcester.edu.


    6.  Travel Funds:  Faculty interested in attending conferences related to the  implementation of LASC (new course development or course redesign for the LASC, assessment and/or advising for the LASC), are encouraged to apply for funding through the Davis Educational Foundation Grant.  Applications for funding can be found at www.worcester.edu/teamsites/lasc.


    7.  Upcoming Workshops and Activities:


    • Establishing a Program of Advising for the Liberal Arts and Sciences Curriculum:  The Roles of the Campus Community

      Wednesday, February 18, from 3-4:30 p.m. in the South Auditorium.  A flyer with additional details was sent out through the Center for Teaching and Learning.



    • Round Table Book Discussion Series:

      A New Agenda for Higher Education:  Shaping a Life of the Mind for Practice, by William M. Sullivan and Matthew S. Rosin

      Facilitators:  Jim Foley, Languages and Literature

                        Steve Morreale, Criminal Justice

                        Dan Shartin, Philosophy
      Over 40 faculty, administrative and staff are currently registered.  If you are interested in participating, please contact Andrea Bilics at cteachlearn@worcester.edu to register and receive a free copy of the book.  The discussion series will begin in March.  Specific dates, times, and locations will be announced by the Center for Teaching and Learning.


    • Two-Day Work Shop Series:  Designing Courses for Significant Learning. Lead Facilitator:  Stewart Ross, Ph.D. Thursday, March 5, and Friday, March  from 8:30 a.m. 4:00 p.m. in the North-South Auditorium.  A continental breakfast and lunch will be provided. Please contact Andrea Bilics at cteachlearn@worcester.edu to register.  Space is limited.



    Come and join your fellow faculty members and learn about grants at WSC. This workshop is part of the Grant Lunch Series presented by WSC Grants Coordinator, Linda M. Crocker. Topics will include how to explore the WSC grant homepage and the process of submitting a grant at WSC.


    February 17, 2009

    Grant Narratives & Budgets

    This workshop will focus on how to create a budget. It will also cover general budget items and procedures for budgets at WSC.


    February 24, 2009

    Grant Administration at WSC

    This workshop will cover such topics as setting up an account, initiating a purchase order, hiring, check requests, and reporting.


    March 3, 2009

    Electronic Submissions

    How to make electronic submissions through places such as Grants.gov, ERACommons, NSF Fastlane, etc. will be discussed during this workshop.


    March 10, 2009

    Research Compliance

    We will discuss how human subjects, hazardous materials and other compliance issues relate to grants and what you need to do.


    This is a series of brown bag lunches. All workshops will take place on Tuesdays from 11:30 to 12:30 at the Center for Teaching and Learning (Sullivan Room 117). The Center for Teaching and Learning will be providing coffee, tea, and water.


    Please pre-register with Andrea Bilics at:

    Andrea.Bilics@worcester.edu or cteachlearn@worcester.edu



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

Central Mass Ready For Stimulus
Worcester Business Journal (2/13/09)
... State College: $117 million for building renovations and expansions, elevator installations and other improvements. Worcester State College asked for ...

Thai fare in Holden
Telegram & Gazette (2/12/09)
Kwasniewski holds degrees in literature from schools in Uzbekistan and has a degree in psychology and early childhood from Worcester State College. ...

Worcester State Named To Service Honor Roll
Worcester Business Journal (2/10/09)
The honor roll is the highest federal recognition a school can gain for civic engagement. Schools are chosen for the honor roll based on ...

From the campus to the gallery
Telegram & Gazette (2/10/09)
Telegram & Gazette Video

Colleges consortium show draws talent from schools
... Holy Cross and Worcester State. This exhibition gives students an opportunity to make that first important step outside their own college community to ...

Tuesday, February 16, 2009



Wed, Feb. 18

BBC History of WWII Film Series: "The Nazis: A Warning from History" continued
Sullivan Building
Eager Auditorium Rm 146
6-8 p.m.

Thurs., Feb. 19

One Poem and...
(open poetry reading series)
Sullivan Building
Room 305
2:45 p.m.


Consortium Art Show
Aurora Art Gallery
660 Main Street



Mon., Feb. 23

"Looking at Service
Learning Through a
Human Rights Lens"
Brown Bag Lunch w/
Kathleen Modrowski

Sullivan Faculty Lounge
12:30 p.m.

BBC History of WWII Film
Series: "The Road to War"

Sullivan Building
Eager Auditorium, Rm 146
6-8 p.m.


Tues., Feb. 24

Community Based
Organization Forum

Student Center, Blue Lounge
11:20 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

Wed., Feb. 25

The Politics of Food, an
International Perspective

Student Center
North/South Auditorium
2 p.m.

Thurs., Feb. 26

"The Power of One Voice
An Activist's Story"
Student Center, Blue Lounge
11:30 a.m.

The Marijuana High
and How It Works:
Cognitive and Brain
Ghosh Science Center,
Room 102
11:30 a.m.

Mon., Mar. 2

BBC History of WWII
Film Series: "Dunkirk"

Sullivan Building
Eager Auditorium, Rm 146
6-8 p.m.

Mon., Mar. 9

BBC History of WWII Film
Series: "War of the Century: When Hitler Fought Stalin"

Sullivan Building
Eager Auditorium, Rm 146
6-8 p.m.

Music and Social Change:
Jim Scott - The Green

Student Center, Blue Lounge
7 p.m.

Mar. 16 - 20

No Classes, Offices Open

Mon., Mar. 23

Music and Social Change:
Pete Seeger: The Power of Song - Documentary

Student Center, Blue Lounge
7 p.m.

Tues., Mar. 24

Diversity Lecture Series presents: "Overcoming Depression and Achieving
 Your Dreams: A Hollywood Success Story"
Student Center, Blue Lounge
11 a.m.

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