On Campus: Campus News

Southwestern Receives $1 Million Grant to Continue its Upward Bound Program

Southwestern has received a four-year, $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to continue its Upward Bound program. The new grant covers the period from Sept. 1, 2007, through Aug. 31, 2011.

Established in 1999, the Upward Bound program at Southwestern offers year-round academic support for students who would be the first in their families to attend college. The program currently serves 50 students in grades 9-12 from Georgetown, Jarrell and Granger high schools.

Southwestern hosts one of 51 Upward Bound programs in Texas. The program had 100 percent of its graduates enroll at accredited colleges and universities across Texas in 2004, 2006 and 2007. The only other program serving the Central Texas area is at Texas State University in San Marcos. For more information on the Upward Bound program at Southwestern, visit www.southwestern.edu/academic/ub.

Southwestern Receives Mellon Foundation Grant for Collaborative Faculty Initiatives

Southwestern has received a three-year, $150,000 Presidential Leadership grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation that will be used to develop collaborative programs among faculty members.

Faculty members can apply to use the grant funds for cross-disciplinary projects in one of five areas: study abroad, research, developing new teaching strategies, communitybased learning or diversity. Over the course of the three-year grant, between 20 and 40 proposals could be funded. Grants will range from $2,500 to $10,000.

“In addition to enhancing the scholarly work of individual faculty members, this grant will build Southwestern’s liberal arts education into a more comprehensive and cross-disciplinary experience for our students,” says Provost Jim Hunt. Hunt says Southwestern plans to continue the program once funding from the Mellon Foundation ends.

This is the third grant Southwestern has received from the Mellon Foundation for collaborative projects. The University has previously received $150,000 to develop a three-year faculty exchange project with several historically black colleges and universities, and $100,000 to develop a three-year student exchange project with the same schools. Schools participating with Southwestern in these two programs are Dillard University in New Orleans, Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, Morehouse College in Atlanta and Rhodes College in Memphis.

Four New Members Named to Board of Trustees

Four new members have been elected to the Southwestern University Board of Trustees.

Trustees elected to four-year terms are Ernesto Nieto ’64, Rep. Pete Sessions ’78 and Austin businessman Robert Wunsch.

Nieto is the founder of the National Hispanic Institute and has served as president since the organization’s inception in 1979. The NHI offers a variety of programs designed to develop leadership among Latino youth. He received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Southwestern in 1994 and the Citation of Merit Award in 1987. Nieto was an inaugural member of Southwestern’s Board of Visitors and a trustee at DePaul University in Chicago.

Sessions was elected to represent Texas’ Fifth Congressional District in 1996, and is currently serving his sixth term in Congress as representative of the 32nd Congressional District. After graduating from Southwestern, he worked for Southwestern Bell Telephone Company for 16 years, serving at the internationally renowned Bell Labs in New Jersey and as district manager for marketing in Dallas. Sessions is a member of the United Methodist Church, the Executive Board of the Circle Ten Council of the Boy Scouts of America and has served as chairman of the Northeast Dallas Chamber of Commerce. He has served on Southwestern’s Board of Visitors since 2003.

Wunsch is CEO of Waterstone Development in Austin and has more than 25 years of experience in real estate investments and development. He has been involved with the development of the Berry Creek Country Club area and Estrella and Somerset Hills subdivisions in Georgetown, Walsh Ranch subdivision and Vintage Plaza in Round Rock’s La Frontera area, and Avery Ranch in Austin.

Mitch Barnett ’07 was elected to a two-year term as a student representative on the board.

He graduated with a degree in business and is currently working as the assistant to the president of The Texas Methodist Foundation. As a student at Southwestern, Barnett served as president of the Student Congress/Student Body, vice president of Student Judiciary, and vice president of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity. He was named Southwestern’s Overall Leader at the annual Student Leadership Banquet in April 2007.

Southwestern Forms Alliance with National Center for Women & Information Technology

Southwestern has been named an Alliance Partner with the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT). The center was founded in 2003 by a coalition of leaders representing business, education and government to ensure that women’s knowledge and skills are fully represented in the creation, development and consumption of information technology.

The NCWIT Alliance includes more than 70 computer science and IT departments across the country that share the organization’s goals and work collectively to help achieve them.

“I am thrilled we have been asked to be a part of the Alliance,” says Barbara Boucher Owens, associate professor of computer science and Southwestern’s representative to NCWIT. “This affiliation will enhance our ability as a department and as an institution to attract students to our computing program.”

Benefits of being an Alliance Partner, Owens notes, include the ability to apply for grant money from the organization. The NCWIT Academic Alliance Seed Fund offers start-up funds of up to $15,000 per project to develop and implement initiatives for recruiting and retaining women in computing and information technology.

Southwestern also will have access to experts in program assessment, as well as expertise on the design and implementation of computing courses that welcome all students.

For more information on NCWIT, visit http://www.ncwit.org.

Southwestern Receives High Marks for its Career Services

Students visit with a representative from the U.S. Department of State at a Federal Career Day event sponsored by Career Services in October.

The 2008 edition of The Best 366 Colleges, published by the Princeton Review, ranked Southwestern #7 in the country for Best Career/Job Placement Services. The list was compiled through a survey of 120,000 students at colleges included in the book.

This was the first year the Princeton Review compiled a list based on students’ rating of their campus career/job placement services.

“This was something we heard a clamoring for among parents and students, given the cost of college education today,” says Jennifer Adams, student survey manager for the Princeton Review.

Adams says students were asked to rank their career center on a five-point scale from poor to very good. Colleges were compared based on the average rating from all students responding to the survey.

“When I found out that the ranking came from students, I was not surprised,” says Roger Young, director of Career Services. “Our students know us, and they know we care about them as individuals.”

Career Services offers a variety of programs throughout the year, ranging from resume writing workshops to job and graduate school fairs. Particularly popular programs include the annual “Etiquette Dinner” and a “Career Connections” barbecue on campus that connects students with alumni. Career Services also does plenty of one-on-one counseling. Last year, staff in the office held more than 700 individual advising sessions.

Young credits his staff—which includes Associate Director Alex Anderson, Internship Coordinator Maria Kruger, Secretary Sharon Hehman and Internship Secretary Megan Hardin—with his office’s success. “I’ve got a great staff,” he says. “Everyone here has the students’ best interests in mind. They don’t think of this as just a job, but a calling.”

Young also attributes the center’s success to support from faculty members.

“We go into between 30 to 35 classrooms a semester to talk about the services we offer,” Young says. “Students really appreciate that.”

Fine Arts Center Re-Opened

After being closed for more than two years of renovations, the Fine Arts Center re-opened in November. Watch for more photos of the newly remodeled center in future issues of Southwestern magazine.

New Residential Center Dedicated

Southwestern University dedicated its new Dorothy Manning Lord Residential Center in October. The center, which is named after the late wife of Georgetown philanthropist W. Grogan Lord, includes three new residence halls: The Eddy C. Scurlock-Edward A. Clark Hall, The Genevieve Britt Caldwell Hall, and The Frank and Louise Britt Carvey Hall. Together, these new residence halls house 66 students in an additional 29,000 square feet of living space.

The residence halls offer apartment-style living, with kitchens in each apartment, fully furnished rooms, a community room and recreation areas. The Frank and Louise Britt Carvey Hall serves as a “Community Engagement/Green Hall,” where students will work together to build a community dedicated to sustainable living and community service. With the addition of these new residence halls, approximately 85 percent of Southwestern students will be able to live on campus. The University hopes to eventually have enough housing on campus for 95 percent of its students.