The Record, Nov. 15, 2010, V19.10

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Chasing the sun across Tennessee: Ricketts and his road crew make history with trip

by Randy Weiler

When it comes to alternative fuels, Dr. Cliff Ricketts considers himself a modern-day Davy Crockett—"a frontiersman with energy"; who says he's "blazed a trail with ethanol, blazed a trail with hydrogen and blazed a trail with sun and water.";

On Nov. 1, Ricketts, a 34-year agriscience professor at MTSU, blazed a unique 500-plus-mile trail across Tennessee.

Ricketts drove a specially adapted 1994 Toyota Tercel from Bristol, Va., to West Memphis, Ark. The fuel for the journey: the sun, plus hydrogen gleaned from water. No gasoline was used.

His successful journey ended about 2 a.m. Nov. 2, when he returned to the ag education shop that houses the alternative fuel vehicles he and his students use for research.

"My whole passion is sun and water,"; says Ricketts, who has had a career of alternative-fuel high-water marks. "I believe accomplishing this feat will have the following implications—a cleaner environment because of clean tailpipe emissions from the vehicle, energy self-sufficiency and renewability, less dependency on foreign oil and less of a trade imbalance because of the purchase of foreign oil.";

Ricketts says he firmly believes he could make the one-day drive from near Blacksburg, Va., to Little Rock, Ark., about one-fourth the distance across the United States, with only one refueling stopover at MTSU.

Traveling mostly by interstate (I-81, I-40 and I-24), the Tercel had a cruising speed around 58 mph. Ricketts calls it "a third backup"; because a 2008 Toyota Prius in Reno, Nev., is being adapted to run on hydrogen and a 1995 Chevrolet Vlazer (a cross between a Volt and a Blazer) is sidelined by low batteries.

The Tercel, nicknamed "Forces of Nature,"; made the trip across the state "on two forces of nature, the sun and water,"; Ricketts says. "With this system, every commuter could drive on sun and hydrogen from water as the energy sources.";

Also traveling with Ricketts, who holds bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Tennessee and a doctorate from Ohio State University, was Jo Borck, a Canada native and a hydrogen expert. Borck attended MIT and graduated from Washington State University with a mechanical-engineering degree.

"He is one of the top five hydrogen people in the world,"; Ricketts says of Borck, whose knowledge of the hydrogen-compression system and the computer-timing mechanism has proven invaluable in their five-year partnership and with Ricketts' students.

How does the engine run off sun and water? Ricketts says the MTSU solar unit provides DC electricity, which is converted into AC electric, and it goes into the grid line.

"In essence, the MTSU system is doing the same thing as a hydro dam or coal-powered unit,"; he says.

"In order to produce hydrogen, tap water is de-ionized and then sent to a solid polymer electrolysis unit,"; he adds. "When the electrolysis unit is running, it uses the stored solar produced by electricity. … This system is a result of using TVA's Green Power Switch Generation Partners Program.

"Next, the hydrogen comes out at 200 psi and goes into two 500-gallon storage tanks and then is compressed to 6,000 psi. The vehicle is then filled with hydrogen. It has two 4.2-kilogram tanks rated at 5,000 psi per tank. The vehicle is adapted and equipped to get a 370-mile range.";

Ricketts' ultimate applied-science research goal is to drive from coast to coast, hopefully in 2011, using only 10 gallons of gasoline.

Brentwood, Tenn.-based Tractor Supply Co. is Ricketts' primary off-campus sponsor. Other key sponsors include the MTSU Office of Research and Sponsored Programs and the College of Basic and Applied Sciences.

ROAD CREW—Hydrogen and computer timing expert Jo Borck, left, joins MTSU students Robert Keeble, Derek Pack and Nick Booher and alumnus Terry Young of Woodbury with the 1994 Toyota Tercel that made an historic Bristol-to-West Memphis, Ark., trip on Nov. 1. Agriscience Professor Cliff Ricketts drove the car on the 500-plus-mile journey, fueled by the sun and hydrogen from water.

ON THE ROAD AGAIN—Dr. Cliff Ricketts drives the specially adapted alternative-fuel 1994 Toyota Tercel down Interstate 40 West, near the Alexandria exit, during a test run in October.

photos submitted

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Biology film wins big

by Lindsey Austin

Dr. Bruce Cahoon and graduate student Noah Flanigan produced a short film that was named the grand-prize winner of the recent Chlorofilms Plant Biology Video Contest.

Titled "Kenaf Callus Hoedown,"; the film used time-lapse photography to show the process of plant-tissue culture. The idea for the video came from Cahoon's Advanced Plant Biotechnology class, where students were asked to grow a callus, which is a mass of plant-tissue cells.

Melissa Wadulisi-Shelby and Brian Huber, graduate students in Cahoon's class, decided to use a fiber plant called kenaf for their project.

"I decided to bring it (kenaf) into the callus project. I modeled the experiment after related species, and it worked beautifully the first time,"; Wadulisi-Shelby said.

After seeing how well the kenaf callus worked and discovering Flanigan's interest in photography, Cahoon wanted to combine it all.

"Here was this great idea, a project and a film festival. It made it entertaining and not like a lecture,"; Cahoon said.

Flanigan set up a camera to take photos of the kenaf callus every 30 minutes for three weeks. He then sorted through the nearly 3,000 photographs during his winter break to find the perfect images and added a "dancing"; callus at the end.

"We made it up as we went along,"; Flanigan said.

The film's background music posed a slight problem, however.

"Noah had trouble finding appropriate noncopyrighted music, so the biology department's bluegrass band jumped right into the project,"; Cahoon explained.

The band, Independent Assortment, included Drs. Matthew Elrod-Erickson, Frank Bailey and Cahoon. In addition to the faculty members, Cahoon's son, Joe, and daughter, Claire, played in the bluegrass group.

"The entire film was done without professional equipment. Noah recorded in the classroom and used what we had around,"; Cahoon explained. "It all just fell into place. The timing was great.";

The film was entered in the artistic category of the Chlorofilms Contest, an international nonprofit organization whose objective is to "promote the creation of fresh, attention-getting and informative video content about plant life."; Wadulisi-Shelby and Huber served as actors in the film.

The team received the $1,000 grand-prize award at the second installment of the contest. They plan to use the money to purchase better film equipment.

"We want to keep doing it. We want better angles and a better look at growth. We want to get more biological information by looking at different plants and improving the system"; Cahoon said.

"Look forward to more from the biology department!"; Flanigan added.

For more information on the Chlorofilms contest or to view "Kenaf Callus Hoedown,"; visit .

SCIENTIFIC PROOF—Dr. Bruce Cahoon, above left, and grad student Noah Flanigan set up a camera to create still photographs of a kenaf fiber callus for a time-lapse film, "Kenaf Callus Hoedown."; Below are stills from the short film, including, from left, grad students Melissa Wadulisi-Shelby and Brian Huber inspecting their experiment, the kenaf calluses in their test tubes and a close-up of the growing plants.

photos submitted

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Staying alert = safety

by Tom Tozer

"So a guy was robbed on campus in the middle of the night. Big deal. I live in Nashville! Why did I get a text and a voice message that woke me up? What a hassle!";

In campus emergency notification, law-enforcement authorities just can't win. If something happens and an alert isn't sent out, some people complain. If something happens and an alert is sent out, others cry foul.

"The fact is, we don't know what a person's schedule is or when they go from point A to point B,"; says MTSU Police Chief Buddy Peaster. "Just because a situation happens at 3 a.m. doesn't mean that people who are at home in bed don't need to know, too. We need to get the information out so that individuals can make good, safe decisions for themselves.";

MTSU Police, the Office of News & Media Relations and the Information Technology Division work together to send out emergency alerts and post safety information on the MTSU website, all while handling phone calls, emails and texts from media, parents and others on- and off-campus.

"I understand that it can be inconvenient at times, especially when people are awakened or disturbed,"; the chief says. "That's not our intent. It happens as a consequence of us having to perform that duty. But in the larger scope of things, those intrusions, those inconveniences, compared with being able to make people safer and more knowledgeable—we have to weigh all the factors and look at the bigger picture.";

Sending emergency alerts after hours exclusively to those people who are awake, on campus and engaged in some activity isn't realistic or even possible. When an alert is activated—whether email, text, voice or all three—a student or staff member may be at home or off-campus and not want to be bothered. But what if that same student decided to study with friends overnight in Scarlett Commons or that professor is working late grading papers? Emergency-alert personnel don't know who's where, or when, so they must send an alert to everyone who's signed up to receive one.

"We're going to put everyone's email address into a system where we can send a message out to everyone that way,"; Peaster says. "But on all the other options, text-message and voice-alert, people … can choose how to be notified. They will get an email, but that won't be intrusive.";

Peaster adds that emergency-alert participants have the option of turning off their phones, especially after hours, if they choose not to be notified when away from campus.

Sending or not sending an alert is also a dilemma, the chief says, citing the example earlier this semester of a criminal suspect's escape from Middle Tennessee Medical Center, then located nearby at Bell and Highland Streets.

"He … had been involved in activity that sometimes leads to weapons and violence. When he left the hospital, they said he was heading toward campus. That's one of those situations where you have to stop and think: Do we need to notify people on campus about this person?"; the chief recalls. "We felt that it would be better to send out an alert because of the possibility that he could show up.";

Peaster encourages the university community to think about others and not just their own minor inconvenience, especially since regulations are looming that mandate more campus-emergency notifications. The chief says he hopes one day to see an Office of Emergency Management created at MTSU that will focus on emergency notification, newer delivery systems and training students, faculty and staff.

'It's certainly something that the federal government is taking seriously, and they're pretty much going to force colleges and universities to take it seriously, too,"; he says.

"More and more federal mandates are coming down. … I think we'll see more entities being fined for not following guidelines and statutes—and I'm not talking just a few dollars, but amounts that could really hamper business in a lot of colleges and universities.";

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In Brief: Fulbright workshops Nov. 17

On Wednesday, Nov. 17, MTSU's Undergraduate Fellowships Office will conduct three informational workshops on the Fulbright Student U.S. Program. The free 45-minute sessions are set at 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. in the Keathley University Center Theater. Each session is open to all MTSU students. For more information, email Laura Clippard at

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For the Record: Nontraditional student making a new tradition

by S. Greggory Hackney

Tradition, at my age, dictates that in an academic setting, I should be some sort of professor or counselor, offering my expertise and help to the average college-aged student.

I am currently 46 years old, a ninth-grade high-school dropout and unemployed after 32 years working mostly in the service industry, but it has been my lifelong goal to receive a formal education. I have spent a great part of that life doing the next best thing: educating myself. I have had years of self-study in various areas of interest, including Eastern and western philosophy, anthropology, psychology, quantum physics and much more. I approach my subjects with perspicuity and zeal; I am a voracious reader and bibliophile.

When the opportunity came to continue my education at MTSU, I leapt at the chance to be in academic society amid hundreds of choices of studies. I think this fact brought out the best in me and reaffirmed my sense of self and my ability to grow, learn and even change. I have always been one to embrace a change in venue, and I found that collegiate life suited me immensely.

Yes, there are challenges in being a nontraditional student; traditional students often look askance at my presence in the classroom or at my tendency to bring my life experiences to the discussion. As an older adult, I have some physical limitations, and returning to the classroom is a definite change in environment after being away so long. Others of us have children and jobs and day-to-day events and tasks that must be taken care of with some alacrity.

But the advantages of being "nontraditional"; often outweigh these things. The older adult student is here on campus for the chance to advance. Often we can offer opinions, advice or perspective to our younger classmates and feel the reward of truly helping someone out. We tend, as a group, to be more willing to accept challenging classes and situations, and we have the goad of desiring to succeed.

I love waking in the morning, knowing that learning and interacting with people is going to be a big part of my day. I remember having jobs that made me really want to pull the blankets over my head and make the day go away.

I feel fortunate and happy to be a nontraditional student, to learn better ways of tackling some of life's thornier problems and to help those that I can, either through direction or by example. I speak often, with pride, that I am working toward my goals in this way.

S. Greggory Hackney, a winner of the university's 2010 Nontraditional Student Week Essay Contest, is a resident of Murfreesboro and a freshman with an undeclared major at MTSU. Nontraditional Student Week at MTSU was Nov. 1-5.

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Be One of the majority: Quit smoking Nov. 18

by Lisa Thomason Schrader

MTSU Health Services' "Be One of the Majority"; campaign is now focusing on tobacco usage for the month of November, targeting the 35th annual Great American Smokeout on Thursday, Nov. 18.

The American Cancer Society began the Great American Smokeout to encourage people who smoke to make a plan to quit or to plan in advance and quit smoking that day.

MTSU will observe the event by encouraging students, faculty and staff who currently smoke to "Be One of the Majority"; by making a quit plan and sticking to it. Based on Health Services' 2009-10 student health assessment data, two-thirds of MTSU students did not smoke cigarettes in the 30 days before they took the survey.

Even more specifically, 82 percent of MTSU students are not daily smokers, a finding echoed by a survey project conducted last year by students in MTSU's American Democracy Project. Consequently, people choosing to quit smoking will find themselves surrounded by a supportive community on campus.

Quitting smoking is not easy, but it can be done. Members of the Raider Health Corps, a volunteer group working with Health Services, will distribute free tobacco "quit kits"; on campus with information and strategies to help current smokers know what to expect and where to go for help quitting. The Student Affairs event calendar at and the MTSU Health Promotion Facebook page ( ) can provide information on convenient distribution points.

The "Be One"; campaign and the Great American Smokeout also provide great starting points for discussions on MTSU's smoking policy. Since tobacco use is the single most preventable cause of disease, disability and death in the United States, harming the user and others in his environment, more than 400 colleges and universities across the nation are completely smoke-free on their campuses. Other campuses have designated smoking areas to leave the main campus walkways and green spaces smoke-free.

More and more MTSU students are asking how this campus can become smoke-free, too. Certainly there are important questions to ask, including how campus boundaries are determined and how new policies are enforced. Those questions can be addressed only when dialogue begins across the layers of a university's organizational structure, from students to the upper administration. Across the state, universities like Austin Peay, Tennessee Tech and, most recently, Belmont, have found ways to effectively implement smoke-free or tobacco-free policies.

Whether you currently smoke or not, the Be One campaign and the Great American Smokeout are great opportunities to take steps toward a healthier lifestyle and to support others in their efforts to improve their health and quality of life.

For more information on the "Be One"; campaign, visit its official website, , and join in the discussion.

Lisa Thomason Schrader is MTSU's director of health promotion. She can be reached at or at 615-494-8704.

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Annual Accounting CPE Day set for Dec. 9 on campus

The second Department of Accounting Continuing Professional Education Day at MTSU will be held Thursday, Dec. 9, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:50 p.m. in the Business and Aerospace Building's State Farm Lecture Hall.

Seminars during the conference include presentations by Department of Accounting faculty on accounting and financial reporting, auditing, taxation and ethics. Participants can earn up to eight hours of CPE credit. The cost is $150, which includes all seminars, materials and lunch.

The sessions include:

  • "Legality of Accounting Topics,"; Dr. Sandy Benson, assistant professor of business law;
  • "Ethics,"; Dr. E. James Burton, dean of the Jennings A. Jones College of Business;
  • "Tennessee Ethics,"; Mark Crocker, executive director of the Tennessee Board of Accountancy;
  • "Constitutionality of SOX (Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002)," Dr. Lara Daniel, business-law professor;
  • "International Financial Reporting Standards,"; Dr. Jeannie Harrington, associate professor of accounting;
  • "Accounting for Gift Cards,"; Dr. Charlie C. Kile, associate professor of accounting;
  • "Additional Issues in Taxation,"; Dr. Tim Koski, accounting professor;
  • "Audit Update,"; Bill Mooningham, a retired partner from Ernst & Young and an accounting instructor;
  • "Government Accounting Standards Board Update," Dr. G. Robert "Smitty"; Smith Jr., interim chair of the Department of Accounting; and
  • "Financial Accounting Standards Board Update,"; Dr. Paula Thomas, professor of accounting.

To register or get more information, visit the Department of Accounting website at or call 615-898-5306.

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Nationally recognized Dance Theatre growing by leaps and bounds

by Gina E. Fann

The award-winning MTSU Dance Theatre is using its new training in the work of a modern-dance pioneer to expand its artistic efforts, including touring in Chicago Nov. 10-14 and performing in the upcoming Fall Dance Concert Dec. 2-4.

The Department of Speech and Theatre hosted a weeklong residency earlier this semester with Alberto Del Saz, artistic director of the Murray Louis and Nikolais Dance Company and co-director of the Nikolais/Louis Foundation for dance. MTSU dance students learned repertory, participated in master classes and attended a series of lectures on Alwin Nikolais, one of American modern dance's acclaimed pioneers, all led by Del Saz.

Del Saz then restaged Nikolais' 1982 masterpiece "Pond"; for selected members of the MTSU Dance Theatre, a pre-professional, auditioned dance company directed by Professor Kim Neal Nofsinger.

That opportunity is allowing students to reconstruct and perform "Pond"; at:

  • the Ruth Page Center for Dance in Chicago Nov. 10-14;
  • the Fall Dance Concert Dec. 2-4 in MTSU's Tucker Theatre; and
  • next April in New York City at Hunter College's "Sharing the Legacy: The Nikolais Centennial.";

"The growth of our program has been phenomenal,"; Nofsinger said as students worked on site-specific dance improvisations outdoors at MTSU's Uranidrome recently. "In the last six years, we have grown from fewer than 20 students to more than 100 dance minors today. We're recruiting freshmen with scholarships now. It's wonderful.";

On Saturday, Dec. 4, MTSU Dance Theatre will host a fundraising dinner in conjunction with its Fall Dance Concert for the group's scholarship program and national tour. Reservations are required and should be made by Monday, Nov. 15, by calling 615-494-7628 or emailing Cost is $35 per person.

The 5:30 p.m. event in Cantrell Hall in the Tom Jackson Building on campus will include a pre-concert talk by visiting dance scholar Dr. Maura Keefe. After dinner and the lecture, attendees will join other audience members in Tucker Theatre at 7:30 p.m. to see the university's dance company in a concert featuring "Pond.";

"Proceeds from the dinner will assist in funding MTSU Dance Theatre's participation in the Hunter College event,"; Nofsinger explained. "The performance in this venue will allow MTSU to perform alongside some of the foremost dance companies and universities in the nation and to be reviewed by some of the foremost dance critics, scholars and historians.";

Nofsinger received funding to host the Del Saz residency through the support of MTSU's Distinguished Lecturers Series and Dissemination and Service Support Funding.

The MTSU Dance Theatre Fall Dance Concert will be performed nightly at 7:30 Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 2-4, in Tucker Theatre. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for MTSU faculty and staff and K-12 students; MTSU students will be admitted free with valid ID.

Dance Concert tickets are available in advance by calling 615-494-8810 or by visiting the Tucker Theatre lobby box office from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Tickets also will be available at the door before the performance.

More information and a complete event schedule for MTSU's Dance Program can be found online.

IMPROVISING OUTDOORS—MTSU dance students Elijah Dillehay, left, Megan Hall and Matthew Cutright work on site-specific dance improvisations at the university's Uranidrome in preparation for centennial performances next year. The MTSU Dance Theatre will perform its Fall Dance Concert Dec. 2-4.

photo submitted

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Newly tenured and promoted faculty recognized

MTSU honored 53 newly tenured and/or promoted faculty members at a Nov. 16 reception in the Tennessee Room of the James Union Building.

Newly tenured faculty and their respective colleges are:

  • Basic and Applied Sciences—Elliot C. Altman, biology; Wendy S. Beckman, aerospace; Carol Boraiko, engineering technology; Andrew V.Z. Brower, biology; and John F. Wallin, computational science;
  • Behavioral and Health Sciences—Helen M. Binkley, health and human performance;
  • Education—Lana C. Seivers, education dean;
  • Liberal Arts—Brad Bartel, university provost; Tommy E. Macon, speech and theatre; James P. Oliver, philosophy; Michael H. Rice, foreign languages and literatures; and Jeremy M. Rich, history.

Newly tenured and promoted faculty include:

  • Behavioral and Health Sciences—Paul S. Foster, psychology; and Leigh Ann McInnis, nursing;
  • Business—Melinda L. Korzaan, computer information systems; Millicent F. Nelson, management and marketing; Mary E. Phillips, accounting; and Sean P. Salter, finance;
  • Education—Beverly J. Boulware, elementary and special education;
  • Liberal Arts—Kimberly D. Dummons, art; Leah T. Lyons, foreign languages and literatures; Jamila L. McWhirter and Felicia M. Miyakawa, music; Tanya M. Peres, anthropology; Karen K. Petersen, political science; and Alicia M. Renfroe, English;
  • Mass Communication—Jacqueline K. Heigle, electronic media communication; and
  • Walker Library—Jo A. Williams.

New promotions include:

  • Basic and Applied Sciences—Jeffrey D. Leblond and Rebecca L. Seipelt, biology;
  • Behavioral and Health Sciences—Colby B. Jubenville, health and human performance; and Patrick M. McCarthy, psychology;
  • Business—Charles L. Baum and Ellis A. Eff, economics; David A. Foote, management and marketing; Cen Li, computer science; Steven A. Morris, computer information systems; and Donald P. Roy, management and marketing;
  • Education—Kathryn E. Boudreau, library science;
  • Liberal Arts—Don J. Aliquo, music; Foster K. Amey, sociology; Scott J. Boyd, theatre; Yuan-Ling Chao, history; Ronald E. Kates, English; Andrei V. Korobkov, political science; Justyna Kostkowska, English; Richard E. Morris, foreign languages and literatures; Lynn A. Nelson, history; and Linda G. Seward, speech and theatre;
  • Mass Communication—Joseph L. Akins, recording industry; William E. Crabtree, recording industry; and Loren E. Mulraine, recording industry; and
  • Walker Library—Suann C. Alexander.

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Corralling the kids

LIVING (AND PLAYING) UNITED—Students at Project Help join their teachers and staff in checking out a special giveaway car for United Way campaign donors as they return from trick-or-treating on campus Oct. 28. Teachers and staff, from left, are Jennifer Plaskett, Bobbie Young, Mary Bowens (slightly hidden), Becky Davidson, Abby Price, Deborah Newman, Tricia Yeargan, Susan Waldrop, Helen Kasawne, Jacob Smith and Amanda Kelley. MTSU's Project Help is one of many programs that receive funding from United Way via the Tennessee Board of Regents' Employee Charitable Giving Campaign. MTSU employees should return their pledge forms by Tuesday, Nov. 30; donors who pledge at least $300 are eligible to win a new Toyota Yaris, Chevrolet Aveo or Ford Fiesta from Alexander Automotive Murfreesboro. More information is available at .

photo submitted

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FAME-ous scholars

WELL-DESERVED RECOGNITION—MTSU senior Casey Miller, left, of Gallatin and junior David Omol, far right, of Khartoum, Sudan, join university officials in thanking the Foundation for Agency Management Excellence, or FAME, for new scholarships. FAME, the charitable foundation of The Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers in Washington, D.C., recently gave Miller and Omol $5,000 FAME Scholarships for the 2010-11 academic year. Jennings A. Jones College of Business Dean Jim Burton, second from left, thanks Woody Ratterman III of Franklin, an MTSU alumnus ('95) and the Midstate CIAB representative, for the organization's support. Joining them is Dr. Ken Hollman, chairholder of the Martin Chair of Insurance. CIAB is committing $50,000 in scholarship funds through the 2014-15 academic year for qualified students who remain in good standing overall and committed to majoring in the insurance program, officials said.

photo submitted

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MTSU celebrates Global Entrepreneurship Week

from Staff Reports

Continuing its focus on lifelong learning, MTSU will celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week Nov. 15-19 to connect young people through local, national and global activities designed to help them explore their potential as self-starters and innovators.

MTSU's Department of Business Communication and Entrepreneurship is coordinating the university's events with the Wright Travel Chair in Entrepreneurship in the Jennings A. Jones College of Business, the College of Media and Entertainment, Department of Recording Industry and the MTSU School of Music. The event, involving 100 countries and an estimated 10 million people, is an initiative to inspire young people to embrace innovation, imagination and creativity and to turn ideas into reality.

A speech from nationally syndicated columnist Deroy Murdock, "Obama vs. Free Enterprise,"; on Friday, Nov. 19, will cap five days of entrepreneurship education. Murdock's columns appear in The New York Post, The Boston Herald, The Washington Times, National Review, The Orange County Register and many other newspapers and magazines in the United States and abroad. His political commentary airs on ABC's "Nightline,"; "NBC Nightly News,"; CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC, PBS and other television news channels and radio outlets.

Also speaking at Friday's event will be Sheilah Griggs, vice president of Point 3 Media and executive director of Ladies Who Launch, who has a diverse real-world background in public relations, media relations and marketing.

Other events include local and national speakers as well as a viewing of the film "Ten9Eight,"; which will be shown in the Keathley University Center. "Ten9Eight"; tells the inspirational stories of several inner-city teens of differing races, religions and ethnicities, from Harlem to Compton and all points in between, as they compete in an annual business-plan competition run by the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship.

MTSU's Global Entrepreneurship Week events are all free and open to the public and will be held in the Business and Aerospace Building and Keathley University Center.

Off-campus visitors should obtain a campus map and temporary parking pass at the second-floor reference department of the Linebaugh Public Library at 105 W. Vine St., just south of Murfreesboro's Public Square.

For more information, visit the Global Entrepreneurship Week website at or call the BCEN department at 615-898-2902. A link to the full schedule as a PDF is available here.

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University breaking ground on new dairy facility

by Randy Weiler

Officials will conduct a groundbreaking ceremony for a new dairy facility at the MTSU Farm, located at 3001 Guy James Road, at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Nov. 15.

The public and MTSU community are invited. The property is located 5.5 miles east of campus off Halls Hill Pike.

"The start of the new dairy is an exciting and wonderful event for the School of Agriculture,"; said Dr. Warren Gill, director of the school.

"We are the only school in the state where students milk the cows and process the milk for students to drink,"; Gill added. "By doing this, the students learn practical lessons in food safety, cattle management and quality assurance, which makes them highly desired (as employees) by Tennessee's large food-processing industry.";

Farm Lab Director Tim Redd noted that the expansion "will be an outstanding opportunity as a lab for our students.";

"We'll now have a greater opportunity for teaching,"; Redd continued. "The facility will be state-of-the-art. It will be much more functional for cattle comfort. It's something we look forward to.";

MTSU's Campus Planning office said the university received $4.375 million for the new dairy facility. The funding will pay for design and construction, including a milking facility and equipment, free-stall barn, hay barn, grain bins, shop and storage area, feed shed, fuel and chemical storage and all associated infrastructure, roads and fencing needed to support the facilities.

The new dairy will cost $2.7 million, Gill said, adding that the additional funding will pay for fencing, moving costs to transfer the cattle herd from the current dairy on Manson Pike, bedding for the animals, improving the grass areas at the Guy James Road location, buying equipment such as tractors and trucks and purchasing office furniture.

"Fencing is expensive but needed,"; Gill said. "It costs something to move cattle. We need to get the pastures ready, and the office furniture and chairs all cost something.";

Designed by Nashville-based Lose & Associates Inc., the project began in earnest in mid-October by Hardcastle Construction Co. Inc. of Madison, Tenn. Gill said the agreed-upon 180-day completion date would have the project finished "in early spring, April or thereabouts.";

MTSU's herd of 60 cows is a combination of Holsteins and Jerseys, Gill said, adding that they provide all the white and chocolate milk consumed on campus by MT Dining customers. Milk consumption on campus is about 3,800 pounds per week or one-third of the MTSU Dairy's production, Redd said.

"Holsteins provide more milk per day. Jerseys provide richer, more flavorful milk,"; Redd said. "Chocolate milk is one of the most popular things that students consume. We're famous for our chocolate milk.";

The remaining milk is sold to the Maryland & Virginia Milk Producers Cooperative Association, which proclaims at its website that it is "marketing milk for dairy-farm families from Pennsylvania to Alabama.";

Gill said the dairy will be a "double-eight parallel parlor with state-of-the-art computerized equipment. Initially, we will milk 60 to 70 cows, but the facility will be capable of expanding to as many as 350 cows.

"We are going to make it as environmentally friendly as possible. We currently are evaluating the use of geothermal technology to assist in cooling the milk and utilizing solar panels for electricity.";

Gill said he does not anticipate expanding the herd soon.

In addition to Redd, dairy personnel include Liz Troup, the dairy-processing lab manager; Jason Tanner, Stark Dairy herdsman; and Ralph Smith, assistant dairy herdsman.

About 30 students a year are hired part-time to assist with MTSU Farm Lab operations, Gill added.

For more information about the Nov. 15 groundbreaking ceremony, call 615-898-2523. For more information about the dairy, contact Gill at 615-898-2404.

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People Around Campus: Human-sciences students give peace felt a chance

by Gina K. Logue

Brilliantly colored, soft, fuzzy mobiles recently arrived from the United Kingdom at MTSU's Ellington Human Sciences Building, connecting artisans who share a desire for less violence and warfare in the world and giving a new meaning to the phrase "soft power.";

Thirteen students in the Textiles, Merchandising and Design Program in the Department of Human Sciences received the felt crafts from their giving partner, The Herd Arts Drive, as part of Peace Felt 2010. The organization was created to promote love and peace through textile art.

It was MTSU's first year of participation in the project, and Assistant Professor Nancy Oxford intends to make sure it will be an ongoing endeavor.

"You could just see how it made them (the students) feel good to give without any expectations,"; Oxford says.

To celebrate Sept. 21, the International Day of Peace as designated by the United Nations, the MTSU students made their own felt peace crafts for their receiving partner, Atelier Filt, in the Netherlands. The concept is designed to indicate a continuous circle of peace and brotherhood that has no beginning and no end.

"We could have done a huge piece altogether, but we thought it would be nice that each student did a representative square,"; Oxford says. "Then, when we sent them to the Netherlands, we gave them some ideas. They could frame them individually. They could sew them together and make a big wall hanging. So we sort of left that open to our receiving partners.";

Each student in Oxford's class was instructed to select a country and research symbols that represent peace in that country's native language. Some of the nations represented in the students' works include Japan, Russia, China and Ireland, and Oxford says they had fun manipulating the felt to express their sentiments.

"Felt is the only fiber that can completely go from fiber to a fabric, bypassing the yarn stage,"; Oxford says. "With a little heat, a little moisture and a little agitation, you can actually … entangle the fibers.";

Oxford says the students create their own natural dyes and also work with fibers from sheep, alpacas, llamas and angora rabbits as well as human hair and dog hair. Among their creations are cocktail hats, scarves and wall hangings.

"Not only are they participating in these fun projects, at the same time they're learning about science, how dyes react with different protein fibers and different cellulosic fibers and how different types of dyes react with different types of fibers,"; Oxford says.

They also learned how to market their creativity and other business aspects of the craft when Breanna Rockstad-Kincaid visited the class Nov. 2.

Rockstad-Kincaid runs her business, Felt Good Fibers, out of her home in Silver Point, Tenn. An award-winning maker of wearable art and former schoolteacher in Putnam County, she earned her bachelor's degree from the Appalachian Center for Craft, an art satellite campus of Tennessee Tech University.

Oxford says the felt craft works from Great Britain will hang in various locations in the Ellington Building at least through the end of the semester.

For more information, contact Oxford at 615-898-5689 or

'PEACE' OF WORK—MTSU human-sciences students pose with their "peace felt"; projects. In the group photo at top, shown in the front row are Amber Richardson, Katie Russell, Rachel Miller, Maurie Baker and Emily Leeth. Standing are, from left, Brittany Blackwood, Nick Hawkins, Christina Klins, Kelley Thompson, Sandi Caves, Margaret May and Lisa Kirkwood. Not pictured is Brittany Bowers. In the photo at left, Miller puts finishing touches on her peace-felt project, while at right, Russell gives her finished work a thumbs-up.

photos submitted

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Faculty/Staff Update


Dr. Don Hong (mathematical sciences) and Dr. Ji-Ping Wang (Northwestern University) are editing a special issue on computational biology and data mining for the International Journal of Mathematics and Computer Science to be published later this year.

Dr. Rosemary Owens (Provost's Office) has been named to the board of the Transit Alliance of Middle Tennessee.


Thirteen MTSU student members of the Society for Electronic Music and their faculty adviser, Dr. Joseph Akins (recording industry) participated in The Moogfest Oct. 28-31 in Asheville, N.C. In collaboration with Moog Music, the multivenue event honored the vision of Robert Moog and his musical inventions with concerts, panel discussions, interactive installations and workshops.


Dr. Robert B. Blair and Maria L. Edlin (Center for Economic Education) received a $10,000 award from the Council on Economic Education to conduct a two-day, Best Practices for AP Macro/Microeconomics advanced-training workshop for high-school economics teachers in partnership with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta-Nashville Branch. Blair and Edlin also received a $36,000 grant from the Foundation for Teaching Economics to coordinate The Right Start Institute in Knoxville in December 2010. The four-day residential program is designed to help high-school teachers to become highly qualified to teach economics in Tennessee.


Dr. Mark Anshel (health and human performance) presented a paper, "The Disconnected Values Model: An Intervention for Promoting Healthy Habits and Coping with Stress in Law Enforcement,"; Oct. 24 at the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference in Orlando, Fla.

Maria L. Edlin (Center for Economic Education) presented a monetary policy workshop for high-school teachers at the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank-Nashville Branch on Sept. 30. The workshop included a videoconference with Ben Bernanke, Federal Reserve chairman, and Dave Altig, director or research for the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Dr. Don Hong (mathematical sciences) was invited to give a seminar talk at the Department of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics in the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University in Atlanta on Oct. 28.

Professor Sheila Marquart (nursing) delivered a platform presentation on "Patient Advocacy"; on Oct. 23 before the Tennessee Association of Student Nurses at its joint convention with the Tennessee Nurses Association.

Professor Cathy Cooper (nursing) delivered a platform presentation on "Forged in the Fire: A Case Study Comparison of the Career Path of Baccalaureate Registered Nurses and Their Professional Education"; at the Xi Alpha Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International's general membership meeting Oct. 26.


A paper by Dr. Don Hong (mathematical sciences) and graduate student Fengqing Zhang, "Elastic Net Based Framework for Imaging Mass Spectrometry Data Biomarker Selection and Classification,"; has been accepted for publication in the journal Statistics in Medicine.

Dr. Karen Petersen (political science) published an article, "Conflict Escalation in Dyads with a History of Territorial Disputes,"; in International Journal of Conflict Management, Vol. 21, No. 4 (2010).

Two retired history faculty members have new publications. Dr. Fred Rolater has completed "The Local Origins of Landmarkism: First Baptist, Nashville; Concord Baptist Association; and Union University and the Definitive Controversy Among Southern Baptists"; in Tennessee Baptist History 12 (Fall 2010): 75-92, and Concord 200, a bicentennial history of the Concord Baptist Association of Murfreesboro. Dr. Ron Messier has published two new books, The Almoravids and the Meanings of Jihad and Jesus: One Man, Two Faiths.

Amy Willbanks (MTSU alumna) and human sciences Professors Nancy Oxford, Dana Miller and Sharon Coleman have co-authored a textbook, Textiles for Residential and Commercial Interiors (2010, Fairchild Books).

Get noticed in The Record!

Send Faculty/Staff Update items and other news to by 3 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16, for the Nov. 29 Record or 3 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 1, for the Dec. 13 Record.

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Campus Calendar Nov. 15-28, 2010

Please note: Event dates, times and locations may change after press time. Please verify specifics when making plans

TV Schedule: "Out of the Blue";
Cable Channel 9: Monday-Sunday, 7 a.m., 5 p.m.
NewsChannel 5+: Sundays, 1:30 p.m.
Visit for other cable-outlet airtimes or for a complete show archive.

Radio Schedule: "MTSU On the Record";
8 a.m. Sundays, WMOT 89.5-FM
Podcasts available anytime at .

Sports @ Home

Nov. 17: Men's Basketball vs. UAB, 7 p.m.
Nov. 18-20: Volleyball Sun Belt Conference Tournament
Nov. 24: Men's Basketball vs. Evansville, 7 p.m.
Nov. 26: Women's Basketball vs. ETSU, 7 p.m.
Nov. 27: Volleyball vs. St. Louis, TBA
Nov. 27: Football vs. Florida Atlantic, 2:30 p.m.
Nov. 28: Women's Basketball vs. South Dakota State, 2 p.m.
For information, visit .

Nov. 15-18
"Bleed Blue to Beat WKU"; Blood Drive

noon-6 p.m. Nov. 15 and 17; 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Nov. 16; 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Nov. 18
MTSU Recreation Center
For information, visit or .

Nov. 15-19
"Operation Christmas Child"; Shoebox-Gift Collection

MTSU Police Department
For information, email

Nov. 15-19
Bachelor of Fine Arts Candidates' Exhibition: Studio 2

8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Todd Gallery (reception 6-8 p.m. Nov. 15)
For information, visit or contact: 615-898-2455.

Monday, Nov. 15
Stones River Chamber Players: "Happy Anniversary, 2010";

7:30 p.m., Hinton Music Hall
For information, visit or contact: 615-898-2493.

Tuesday, Nov. 16
Faculty Promotion and Tenure Reception

3-4:30 p.m., Tennessee Room, James Union Building
For information, contact: 615-898-5941.

Nov. 17-20
MTSU Theatre: "A Flea in Her Ear";

7:30 nightly, Tucker Theatre
Tickets: $10 adults, $5 MTSU employees and K-12 students; MTSU students free with ID
For information, contact: 615-494-8810.

Wednesday, Nov. 17
Study Abroad Fair

10 a.m.-2 p.m., second floor, Keathley University Center
For information, visit .

"Category 5,"; University of Southern Mississippi Woodwind Quintet
8 p.m., Room 117, Saunders Fine Arts Building
For information, visit or contact: 615-898-2493.

MTSU Percussion Ensemble
8 p.m., Hinton Music Hall
For information, visit or contact: 615-898-2493.

Thursday, Nov. 18
MTSU Wind Ensemble

7:30 p.m., Hinton Music Hall
For information, visit .

Friday, Nov. 19
Distinguished Lecture Fund Application Deadline

For information, email

MTSU String Studio Extravaganza
6 and 8 p.m., Hinton Hall
For information, visit .

Sunday, Nov. 21
Sunday Night Chinese Film Festival: "Go Lala Go!";

6 p.m., Room 103, Bragg Mass Communication Building
For information, visit or contact: 615-494-8696.

Monday, Nov. 22
MTSU Jazz Ensemble II

7:30 p.m., Hinton Music Hall
For information, visit .

Tuesday, Nov. 23
Murfreesboro Youth Orchestra

7 p.m., Hinton Music Hall
For information, visit .

Nov. 25-27
Thanksgiving Holidays

No classes; university closed.

Get noticed in The Record!

Submit Campus Calendar items and other news tips to by 3 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16, for the Nov. 29 Record. The final edition for fall 2010 is Dec. 13, so submit your late December and early January 2011 items before 3 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 1. Thanks!

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