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In Focus: 3/1/2012

A weekly newsletter published by the Communications Office

Top News

SOUTHWESTERN STUDENTS HELP THE LOCAL BOYS & GIRLS CLUB REVIVE ITS GARDENING PROGRAM

The Boys & Girls Club of Georgetown used to have a garden, but it got covered up when the growing program needed outdoor storage space.

This year the garden – and a garden club for the children – have been revived thanks to help from Southwestern University students.

Planning for the new garden began last summer when 2011 graduate Dianna Urrego was hired to work at the Boys & Girls Club. Urrego laid the groundwork for the program and then turned it over to Sarah Puffer, a sophomore environmental studies and international studies major who has been active in Southwestern’s community garden. Puffer wrote a proposal for a SEED grant from Southwestern and received $3,000 to build the new garden.

Even before the new garden was ready for planting, Puffer and other Southwestern students were going to the Boys & Girls Club every Friday to run a garden club program. In addition to teaching students about gardening, Puffer said a key focus of the program is teaching students about the importance of good nutrition.

Read more here.

2009 GRADUATE PLANS 342-MILE SKI CROSSING OF GREENLAND TO RAISE MONEY FOR DOCTORS WITHOUT BORDERS

2009 graduate Akshay Nanavati has tried mountaineering, caving and sky diving. But this spring he will undertake his longest and most ambitious expedition to date – a 342-mile ski crossing of Greenland.

Nanavati is going on the trip to raise money for Doctors Without Borders, an international medical humanitarian organization.

“Their work is extremely inspiring,” Nanavati said. “They willingly go in to horrible conditions to try and serve other people who don’t have a choice to be there. It is a true testament to the humanity of others.”

Nanavati will make the ski crossing with a team of about six people led by a member of Pirhuk Greenland Expedition Specialists. He will have to drag a sled carrying all the supplies he needs to survive for just under a month.

Read more here.

Events

DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL ABOUT FOOD CONCLUDES MARCH 7

A documentary film festival about food organized by a group of Southwestern students will conclude March 7 with a showing of the film “Fresh” at 7 p.m. in the Campus Center Ballrooms. Producer Ana Joanes will be on hand to discuss the film.

Read more here.

COMMUNITY GARDEN HOSTING WORKSHOP MARCH 20 

The Community Garden is hosting a workshop on “Building a Sustainable Food System” Tuesday, March 20, from 4-5 p.m. in the garden. The workshop is free and open to the public. To register, contact Molly Jensen, faculty advisor for the Community Garden, at 512-863-1797 or jensenm@southwestern.edu.

MARCH 24 FUNDRAISER WILL BENEFIT THE GEORGETOWN ANIMAL SHELTER AND THE FOUNTAINWOOD OBSERVATORY

A March 24 “Yoga Under the Stars” fundraiser will benefit the Georgetown Animal Shelter and the education and public outreach efforts of Southwestern University’s Fountainwood Observatory.

The event will be held from 8:30-10 p.m. and will give participants an opportunity to practice  yoga under the stars at the Fountainwood Observatory. Anna Easterling from Moksha Yoga will lead the yoga practice and Southwestern Physics Professor Mark Bottorff will run the observatory.

Suggested donation for those wanting to participate in the event is $10, but any amount will be accepted. Space is limited, so anyone interested in participating in the event should reserve a space by writing anna@mokshayogaonthesquare.com.

For details on the event, visit http://mokshayogaonthesquare.com/?p=givingback#81

Media Coverage

The Williamson County Sun ran a page of photos from the spring Black Box Theatre Series.

The Williamson County Sun and the Austin American-Statesman covered the death of former baseball coach Jim Mallon.

Community Impact News covered the Shilling Lecture. Read the story here.

Notables

Students David Boutte and Paige Duggins and alumnus Graham Oliver presented a panel talk titled “The Diamond Miners’ Union: Faculty and Your Writing Center” at the South Central Writing Centers Association’s annual conference held Feb. 23-25 in Little Rock, Ark. Elisabeth Piedmont-Marton, associate professor of English, also presented a paper at the conference titled “The Writing Center Way to a Jerk-Free Workplace.” 

Shana Bernstein, associate professor of history, gave two invited talks at UT San Antonio Feb. 29. The first was an undergraduate lecture on her book, Bridges of Reform: Interracial Civil Rights Activism in Twentieth-Century Los Angeles, and the second was a graduate and faculty seminar presentation on her current project, “The ‘Garbage Ladies’ of the Settlements: Environmental Justice Reform in Progressive-Era Chicago.”

Senior sociology major Kristen McCollum has been selected to receive the 2012 Odum Award for Best Undergraduate Paper by the Southern Sociological Society. She will receive the award at the society’s annual meeting in New Orleans March 21-24. McCollum received the award for a paper titled “The Art of Collective Identity: How an Art from the Streets Program Fosters a Sense of Community Among the Homeless.” The paper was written for her fall 2011 capstone class on “Social Movements and Activism” taught by Maria Lowe, professor of sociology. Southwestern sociology majors have won the Odum Award five of the past seven years. Read more here.

Scott McLean, associate professor of kinesiology, is president of the Texas Chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine, which is holding its annual meeting in Austin this week.

1996 graduate Farhana (Ali) Qazi is one of two persons selected to receive the 2012 21st Century Council Leader Awards presented by the National Committee on American Foreign Policy. The awards recognize the achievements of individuals under the age of 40 who demonstrate a promising future in the realm of American foreign policy. Qazi will receive the award at a March 8 gala also honoring Karl Eikenberry, the former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, and Muhtar Kent, chairman and CEO of The Coca Cola Company. Read more here.

A paper by 2011 graduate Kate Roberts has been accepted for publication in the 2012 issue of Sociological Insight, a refereed national undergraduate journal that promotes undergraduate scholarship in the social sciences. Roberts wrote the paper, titled “‘In the Name of Injustice:’ The Role of Moral Shocks in the Texas Anti-Death Penalty Movement,” for her fall 2010 sociology capstone course under the direction of Maria Lowe, professor of sociology.