Student Support Services announces restructure

Student Support Services has restructured its staff and resources to better serve students, following approval last March by the US Department of Education. Eddie Venegas was named Assistant Director of Student Support Services, effective Sept, 1. This represents a consolidation of two former counseling positions. He will assume some additional administrative duties, as well as a heavier counseling load. Funds will be allocated to provide some part-time professional lab coordinators for  higher quality tutoring to SSS students. Funds were also allocated to provide a more permanent (.75) part-time administrative assistant to maintain program and student data files. This position will be filled shortly.

Last semester, SSS opened the Academic Resource Center in McDaniel Hall, room 202 to provide tutoring services to SSS students. The lab format provides greater access for students to receive tutoring support, and the professional staff members provide higher quality tutoring. We encourage all SSS students to try out the new lab.

Student & Program News

Matt Martinez, AS&F President, was featured in a recent USA Today article on student government leaders.

Nine students traveled to Turkey and Greece in June as part of the psychology course “Cultures of the Mediterranean,” co-taught by assoc. professors of psychology Dr. Rob Demski and Dr. Leslie Cramblet Alvarez. The students were prepared for the 12-day trip by 15 weeks of reading about the history, culture, religion, politics, food, art, music, and geography of Turkey and Greece. The nine students, John Burkhart, Felicia Carter, Jordan Hartley, Tucker Jones, Carolyn Koch, Rikki Leyba, Crystal Pimentel, Dana Reed, and Brittney Siler were also required to do oral presentations and keep a travel journal. More

The Adams State Chapter of Psi Chi, the international honor society in psychology, was designated Model Chapter for the 2011-2012 academic year – its second such award since its charter in 2007. This designation is accompanied by a $100 award. New officers for the 2012-2013 academic year include  president, Chris Olance; vice president, Tucker Jones; secretary, Rachel Lundgren; and treasurer, Megan Hart.

Diego Cacique, a junior guitar major, was selected to attend The Volterra Project in Volterra, Italy. He was one of two students from the United States selected to participate.

Hannah Liechty, a junior flute major, was selected to participate in the Santa Fe Flute Immersion in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She studied all aspects of the flute under internationally recognized clinicians and teachers.

Chris Allington, a student in the Counselor Education Master’s degree program, was awarded a 2012-2014 Health Professions Scholarship through the El Pomar San Luis Valley Regional Council, sponsored by the Colorado AHEC Program Office at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and the San Luis Valley Area Health Education Center (SLVAHEC). He works in a residential treatment center with the San Luis Valley Mental Health Center for substance abuse serving the offender population, both coming out of prison and clients on probation. He plans to become a mental health clinician and eventually a Licensed Practicing Counselor. Scholarship recipients commit to practice two years in a Colorado rural community and/or urban underserved practice.

Faculty & Staff News

Three chemistry faculty presented classroom strategies at the Biennial Conference on Chemical Education, held at Pennsylvania State University July 29 – Aug. 2. They attended  many valuable sessions and workshops focused on bettering the chemistry. Dr. Christy Miller, professor of chemistry, presented “Reading More Than the Textbook Makes Biochemistry More Interesting.” Asst. professor of chemistry Dr. Chris Adams presented a poster entitled, “Building and testing a Stirling engine: A four-week, undergraduate physical chemistry laboratory experiment.”Asst. Professor of Chemistry Dr. Renee Beeton gave a talk on “The adventures of developing two forensics chemistry courses” and she also assisted with two mini-workshops in forensic science.

Allison Bennett, Nursing Simulation Laboratory coordinator, was awarded a 2012-2014 Health Professions Scholarship through the El Pomar San Luis Valley Regional Council, sponsored by the Colorado AHEC Program Office at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and the San Luis Valley Area Health Education Center (SLVAHEC). She has been accepted to the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus Master’s of Science degree in nursing. Scholarship recipients commit to practice two years in a Colorado rural community and/or urban underserved practice.

Dr. Benita Brink, assoc. professor and chair of the Department of Biology and Earth Sciences, and Adam Kleinschmit, asst. professor of biology, participated in the Genomics Education Partnership workshop in June. As new participants in the program, they will introduce genomics research into classes and as independent research projects with students. Continuing instruction begun by Dr. James Bedard, they plan to expand student knowledge of genomics by broadening their exposure to the field and introducing key concepts in multiple courses.

Brink also attended the National Association of Advisors for the Health Professions meeting in June. The meeting described upcoming changes to the MCAT (Medical College Admissions Test) and the impact this will have on pre-medical undergraduate preparation for medical school, holistic review of applications, and trends in many health professions.

Eric Carpio, asst. vice president for enrollment management, is president-elect of Co-Ceal — Colorado’s Coalition for the Educational Advancement of Latinos.

Margaret Doell, professor and chair of the Art Department, was one of 57 selected as Fellows with the American Council on Education (ACE) for academic year 2012-13. As such, she will spend the upcoming academic year under the mentorship of  Chancellor Pamela Shockley Zalabak at University of Colorado – Colorado Springs.

 Dr. Tracy Doyle, chair of the Music Department, was selected by competitive audition to perform at the 2012 National Flute Association Convention at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. She performed Nocturnal Passage, a composition by Dr. Matthew Schildt for flute and piano, as well as Ute Sundance with Professor James Doyle, a traditional work arranged by Alamosa native Valarie Naranjo.

Dr. Kristy L. Duran, asst. professor of biology, had a paper published in this month’s issue of Journal of Biogeography entitled “From middens to molecules: phylogeography of the pinon piñon pine, Pinus edulis.” See abstract.

Shawn Elliot, asst. professor of nursing, returns to campus after a leave of absence to pursue her doctorate degree. She received her Doctor of Nursing Practice from University of Colorado Denver in May, 2012. She coordinates the RN to BSN program.

Dr. Richard Goddard, assoc. professor of history and archeology, presented “Archaeological Investigations at Fort Massachusetts,” at the Friends of the Fort Garland Museum’s July 10 meeting. Located six miles north of the Fort Garland, Fort Massachusetts was the first US Army fort in Colorado, occupied from 1852 to 1858. In 1858 it was moved and renamed Fort Garland. He showed slides of discoveries and remaining questions from two summers of  excavations at the site.

Marianna King, adjunct professor, has published her book, School Violence – Crisis and Opportunity, described by experts in the field as the definitive book about school violence. She teaches a course on school violence. More information.

Ken Marquez was recently named Adams State University’s Vice President for Student Affairs. While the title is new, the job is not. Since 2005, he has served as Adams State’s Interim Dean of Students, Dean of Students, and Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs.

“Ken has been reporting directly to me for two years and this title more accurately reflects Ken’s duties,” said Adams State President David Svaldi. “This change in title is also a result of requests from Ken’s direct reports that his title more accurately reflect the reporting structure and his duties and responsibilities.” More.

Dr. Nate Pipitone, asst. professor of psychology, was part of an international team that published a paper in PLOS ONE entitled “Voice and Handgrip Strength Predict Reproductive Success in a Group of Indigenous African Females.”  The research was also covered in Popular Science.

Pipitone’s fellow researchers included Jeremy Atkinson (SUNY Albany), Piotr and Agnieszka Sorokowscy (University of Wroclaw, Poland), and Gordon Gallup (SUNY Albany). They studied the Himba people from Opuwo, Namibia, in Africa, a population whose lifestyle closely resembles human evolutionary history. Their study results bore out the hypothesis that women’s voice pitch would be positively correlated to the number of children and grandchildren these women have. Women with higher-pitched voices reported more children and grandchildren. This study is the first to show a link between voice and reproductive success among women. What’s more is that among older women, those who were stronger (had higher handgrip strengths) had more children as well. Consistent with this hypothesis, the current study found that stronger women (both in general and among older women) have more offspring and grand-offspring

Jenna Neilsen, asst. professor of theatre, studied Comedy Improvisation in a week-long summer intensive at Second City, Chicago. She also presented on a panel entitled “It Takes a Village: Parenthood in Theatre Academia” at the recent Association for Theatre in Higher Education conference, held in Washington, DC.

Dr. Ana Vivas, asst. professor of science/math/technology was selected to participate in the Mathematical Association of America’s Project NExT.

New Employees

Robert Affeldt – English, Theatre, Communications faculty
Mark Alexander – Sports Information Director
Michael Austin – Structural Trades
Steven Binz – Physics faculty
James Capra – Head Baseball Coach
Ankur Chattopadhyay – Computer Science faculty
Kathleen Chavez – Reading/writing faculty
Mariana DiGiovanni – Head Women’s LaCrosse  Coach
Stuart Figueroa – Residence Director, Housing
Zoila Gomez – Asst. Coach/High Altitude Training Center Coord.
Kathleen Gubbels – English, Theatre, Communications faculty
Stephanie Hensley – Teacher Education faculty
Adam Kleinschmit – Biology  faculty
Matthew Luttrell – Music faculty
John McCeery – Head Men’s LaCrosse Coach
Cheri Meder – Counselor Education faculty
Aaron Moehlig – Chemistry faculty
Candice Morgan – Residence Director, Housing
Lori Notestine – Counselor Education faculty
Carissa Rahn – Extended Studies
Natalie Rogers – School of Business faculty
Erica Romero – Financial Aid
Max Ruybal – Admissions counselor
Michael Tomlin – Chair, School of Business
Aaron Tuioti-Mariner – MBA Program Asst.
Emerson Watanabe – Intramural sports
Alfonso Velasquez – Admissions counselor
Jeremy Yeats – Human Performance & Physical Education faculty



The Great Story gets better

Hickenlooper on campus May 19

Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper will be on campus Saturday, May 19, to sign into law House Bill 12-1080, which will officially designate Adams State a university. More details on this historic event will be released as they are finalized.

“We are very excited about entering a new phase as a university,” said Adams State President David Svaldi. The college’s Board of Trustees voted to pursue the name change Aug. 26, after exploring the issue for three years. The change will be official Aug. 7, 2012, effective with the fall 2012 semester (2012-13 academic year).

The “Our Great Story Just Got Better” celebration of the name change is planned for August, beginning with the Welcome Back Luau on Thursday, Aug. 23, and continuing through Friday, Aug. 24. Special events will include faculty art exhibits, concerts, and poetry readings, with new works commissioned to commemorate the name change. There will also be a planetarium show, free public concert, and a Gala dinner to raise scholarship funds. More details will be released later in the summer.

Read more.

Many honored at Employee Recognition Ceremony

2012 Presidential Teachers

Jones named emeritus professor

Dr. Marty Jones, professor of chemistry, was awarded emeritus status upon his retirement this spring after 23 years at ASC. Jones, known throughout the campus and outlying community for his involvement and positive attitude, will be missed by students, faculty, and staff. Briana Lewis, a senior music major, took Jones’ introduction to chemistry class this semester after a friend convinced her to take his class. She went from dreading chemistry to enjoying the subject. “Dr. Jones shows examples of chemistry in the real world and does not over complicate the subject.”

Emeritus Professor of Chemistry, Dr. Marty Jones
Benson, Centeno & Robison named Presidential Teachers
2012 Presidential Teacher Award winners: Dr. Beth Robison, Dr. Rob Benson, Dr. Mari Centeno

A quarter decade of combined experience and a shared purpose to foster the love of learning — Adams State College professors Dr. Rob Benson, professor of earth science; Dr. Mari Centeno, associate professor of political science; and Dr. Beth Robison, assistant professor of music, received the 2012 Presidential Teacher Award, recognizing outstanding undergraduate teaching, advising, and mentoring.

All had similar reactions upon hearing they were selected. Benson: “shocked and honored,” Centeno: inspired to “further live up to the honor,” and Robison: “surprised, humbled, and grateful to her students.”

Read more.

Faculty tenure & promotions

The following faculty were recently promoted and/or tenured this semester: Dr. Jared Beeton, tenured associate professor of earth science; Dr. Laura Bruneau, tenured associate professor of counselor education; Dr. Zena Buser, associate professor of business; Dr. Mark Finney, tenured associate professor of mass communication; Dr. Aaron Abeyta, full professor of English; Dr. Robert Demski, full professor of psychology; Dr. Richard Goddard, full professor of social studies.

Exemplary Faculty
Dr. Brent King

Dr. Leslie Alvarez and Dr. Brent King,both associate professors of psychology, were recognized for exemplary performance in view of their teaching effectiveness, scholarly/creative activity, and service.

Dr. Leslie Alvarez
Employees honored for service to ASC

The 2012 Adams State Employee Recognition Ceremony, held April 25, recognized the contributions and years of service of the following employees

25 Years

  • Rex Filer
  • Donna Griego

20 Years

  • Linda Jones
  • Lori Laske
  • Tammy Lopez
  • Ken Marquez
  • Liz Martinez
  • Paul Newman
  • Brent Ybarrondo

15 Years

  • Rob Benson
  • Beneranda Chacon
  • Sherry Duran
  • Otis Hager
  • Margery Herrington
  • Mary Hoffman
  • Charlie Johnson
  • David Mazel
  • Demetrius Vigil
  • Grace Young

10 Years

  • Traci Bishop
  • Roger Eriksen
  • Dick Goddard
  • Karla Hardesty
  • Heather Heersink
  • Joe Mestas
  • Tracy Rogers
  • Donna Stout

5 Years

  • Lorraine Aragon
  • Jared Beeton
  • Renee Beeton
  • Lisa Brown
  • Laura Bruneau
  • Zena Buser
  • Mark Finney
  • Melissa Gastinger
  • Dale Goodrich
  • Larry Joe Hunt
  • Robert Lopez
  • Renee Monaghan
  • Diane Mondragon
  • Michael Mumper
  • Jenna Neilsen
  • Michael Rael
  • Stephen Roberds
  • Roselie Schlaufman
  • Jeremy Taylor
  • Jamie Van Valkenburg
  • Joel Shults
  • Dervin Taylor
  • Dolores Vigil
  • Manny Wasinger

More campus improvements planned at ASC

New High Altitude Events Center

Includes High Altitude Events Center

Adams State will soon begin another $12.7 million worth of campus additions and renovations, including a new High Altitude Events Center, according to President David Svaldi. At its Feb. 9 meeting, the college’s Board of Trustees approved bond financing to continue residence hall renovation and develop facilities for the college’s expanding athletics program.

The financing includes $6.9 million to renovate three wings in the Coronado and Girault residence halls, as well as $3 million to construct the High Altitude Events Center. An additional total of $2.77 million will support:

  • Development of a baseball complex
  • Conversion of the football practice field to synthetic turf
  • First phase renovation of the East Campus (formerly Evans School) to house the Human Performance & Physical Education Department
  • Renovation in Plachy Hall to create more locker rooms and meeting rooms
  • Repair of the Plachy Hall parking lot

Read more.