|University of Alaska Southeast Faculty and Staff Newsletter
||March 14, 1997
UAS readies for re-accreditation
Is it ever too early to begin preparing for an important event? Not if the
event is the evaluation visit of UAS's accrediting body, according to Rita
Dursi Johnson. This spring UAS began preparations for the evaluation visit of
the university's accrediting body, the Northwest Association of Schools and
A Self -Study Steering Committee has been appointed. The members are Linda
Halfon and Dennis Girardot from Sitka, Dorothy Armstrong from Ketchikan, and
from Juneau, Susan Koester, Tim Fullam, Virginia Mulle, Tish Griffin, Vesna
Kilibarda, David Marvel, and Rita Dursi Johnson.
Marvel and Johnson are the co-chairs, and both attended a training conference
in Seattle. Marvel was impressed with how much has to be done, "We've only got
2 and a half years!"
The accreditation visit occurs October 1999. The process toward
re-accreditation includes conducting an incisive institutional self-evaluation
involving all constituencies. NASC recommends taking at least a full academic
year for this enterprise according to Johnson.
UAS's Steering Committee members, working with Vice Chancellor Robbie Stell,
will develop the planning model and process, monitor the progress of outcome
assessment goals and activities, oversee the production of the Self-Study
Final Report, and host the evaluation team visit. "Then," Johnson said, "they
will be allowed to once again have a life."
Marine biology field trip
Thirteen student members of the Marine Biology Club spent five days on a field
trip to Petersburg. Students explored intertidal environments, viewed
trumpeter swans, analyzed stream flow dynamics, and investigated geologic
features of the island.
UAS faculty on the trip included Marine Biology Club advisor Ed Caine, Cathy
Connor, and David Love. Dick Marston took time from his family visit to
Petersburg to assist with hydrology activities. Housing was provided by
Petersburg Seafood (a division of Icicle Seafood), Student Activities provided
a 15-passenger van, and transportation fees were augmented by the Science and
"It wasn't quite the bathing suits and beaches you expect with spring break,"
Connor said, "but it was good geology and good forest ecology."
President tours UAS
President Komisar visits Juneau campus.
UA President Jerome Komisar toured recently remodeled buildings on the Juneau
campus Tuesday. Chancellor Marshall Lind and Bob Green, physical plant
director, showed the president the Soboleff Annex offices, Mourant Cafe, Lake
Room, coffee room, bookstore and student government offices and lounge.
Health benefits considered
The university Health Benefits Task Force is reviewing possible changes to
employee health benefits in an effort to slow the growth of the
$17-million-a-year plan. Changes being examined include increasing the
deductible amounts for individuals and families; increasing out-of pocket
maximums for medical and pharmacy costs; increasing dependent charges; and
adding orthodontics to the plan.
Other options considered include changes to lab and x-ray benefits; wellness
provisions; and dental deductibles. No recommendations by the group have been
made on these options as yet.
The task force will meet by audio conference March 27 at 8:30 a.m. To
participate or to voice an opinion on proposed changes, contact Rita Bowen
(465-6439) or Kirk McAllister (465-6473).
Information is available on the UA Employee Benefits web site about the task
force, the employee benefits handbook, pharmacy provider list, frequently
asked questions, supplemental health, reimbursement accounts and employee
leave policies. The web site address is
Bread Loaf Institute comes to UAS
For the first time in Alaska or on the West Coast the Bread Loaf Literature
and Writing Institute will be held at the Juneau campus this summer. "This is
the most prestigious school of English in the country," according to UAS
assistant professor Scott Christian who is coordinating the summer program.
The program, held June 2 - 22, will offer classes in poetry writing,
Shakespeare, and narrative by nationally known instructors. Applications may
be obtained from Christian.
"This is a pilot year," UAS Dean of Faculty John Pugh said. "But we're looking
at a long term partnership with Middlebury College and their Bread Loaf
Study abroad openings
UAS students may still apply to study abroad next year through the
International Student Exchange (ISEP). Opportunities exist in the following
language groupings: English-language (Korea, Finland, Sweden); French
(France); Spanish (Colombia, Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil); and German (Germany,
There are also opportunities for language instruction if students are not
prepared to study in a foreign language. Anyone interested should immediately
contact Elizabeth Schelle at 465-6455. She also requests that faculty announce
the ISEP opportunities to their classes and advisees.
Barbara Carlson Burnett and others were honored by a transfer student.
After student John Severin had to leave town for an emergency, Juneau campus
staff and faculty pitched in to help him drop classes without incurring a
financial liability. Financial aid director Barbara Carlson Burnett said,
"This was an example of the university thinking of the student first."
Severin later thanked Burnett, Georgia Sepel, Cari Rose and Dennis Russell by
presenting them with an angle food cake covered with whipped cream, sliced
strawberries and topped with tulips. "The cake didn't last very long," Burnett
Pension vendor in Juneau March 19
Information about the university pension plan, optional retirement program and
tax-deferred annuities will be presented in Juneau by Phil Younker on March
19. Younker, who represents VALIC and Lincoln National, will be available
from 8 a.m. to noon in the Soboleff conference room.
Dr. Ed Caine, associate professor of biology, was elected to a 3-year
term on the Gastineau Channel Fish and Game Advisory Committee. It makes
recommendations on local policy and management issues to the Alaska Board of
Fish and Game. Caine was elected to a seat representing sport fishing and
Elaine Sunde, Sitka campus director, addressed the national Community
College Futures Assembly in Orlando. She described the UA Learning Consortium
which is one of the ten finalists for the national Bellwether Award for
efficiency and effectiveness in higher education. Sunde serves as director of
Outreach Education at UAS.
Explorations '97 submissions due
Prizes of $500 will be awarded to a poet and $500 to a writer of short fiction
by Exploration '97, the University of Alaska Southeast literary magazine now
in its 16th year of publication. Submissions must be postmarked by March 21.
Juneau campus students are also eligible for prize money awarded for art work
to be published in Explorations '97 . The writing contest is open to anyone.
Last year nearly 900 submissions were received.
Submissions or requests for guidelines should be made to: Explorations, editor
Art Petersen, 465-6418, FAX at 465-4606, or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Staff Development plan
The UAS Staff Development Day will be replaced with an on-going software
training program taught by BIS faculty. Sitka and Ketchikan will provide
similar training on their campuses using their own faculty.
A survey conducted at the last Staff Development Day asked what kind of
training most employees wanted. "The overwhelming top response was for
on-going computer training," according to Kirk McAllister. Computer training
now being conducted in Administrative Services may serve as a model for all
Honors group grows in Ketchikan
The Ketchikan campus chapter of Phi Theta Kappa welcomes six new members March
16. Alpha Rho Beta chapter presently has 15 active members. The group was
revived in Ketchikan in the past couple of years with the help of faculty
advisor Nancy Siemon who advises the PTK group at her home campus in New York
state. Phi Theta Kappa is the international honor society for students at
Math search in Ketchikan
The Ketchikan campus is going through more than 40 application packets in
search for its next math professor. Candidates from Alaska to foreign
countries submitted resumes. Karalynn Crocker-Bedford leads the screening
Nancy Siemon, who teaches math, will leave Ketchikan campus after two years as
a visiting faculty member in an exchange with Tompkins Cortland Community
College in Ithaca, N.Y. Siemon and her husband Ed extended their stay an extra
year with the permission of TCCC. Ed Siemon has taught electronics courses in
New R&R receptionist
Heidi Hanus has been working as the receptionist at Records and Registration
since March 3. She replaces Moni Chandy who accepted another position. Hanus
has been in Juneau four years and worked as a bookkeeper at Super Bear
Lydia George, a Tlingit from Angoon, will serve as Elder-in-Residence on the
Juneau campus later this semester. A leader of the Deisheetaan clan of the
Raven Moiety, she is the second elder-in-residence at UAS, following Herman
Kitka Sr. According to Tom Thornton, George will lecture in several classes
and participating in a cooperative research project.
The bookstore is having a St. Patrick's Day sale on green clothing March 17.
On March 28 the bookstore will have an Easter egg special where people can
open a plastic egg for give-a-ways and clothing discounts.
Magazine features UAS
Articles about UAS are appearing in the Alaskan Southeaster magazine. Louis
Tagaban, a Juneau campus sophomore from Petersburg, was featured in the first
one. Pat Cunningham, a 55 year old who started at UAS this semester to earn a
teaching certificate, will be in the next issue. Student researchers on the
Juneau Icefield will be the subject of a later article.
Monday, March 17
St. Patrick's Day lunch, Mourant Cafe
Wednesday March 19
Pension provider answers questions, 8 a.m. to noon, Soboleff conference
Friday, March 21,
BBQ rib dinner, Mourant Cafe
Deadline for submissions to Explorations '97
Thursday, March 27
Health Benefits Task Force teleconference, 8:30 a.m.
Saturday, March 29
Banff Film Festival, 7 p.m. Centennial Hall