Lander Universit y 2008 Presidentâ€™s Report
Knowledge Through Hands-on Learning
Through Hands-on Learning
Experience Your Education:
Expanding a tradition at Lander
Man on the Move:
Triathlete Cameron Dorn does business abroad
Exercise Your Options:
Ankoma Andersonâ€™s telescope mirror research could change the way we view space
Students lead movement toward lifelong fitness
Sowing Seeds of Goodwill:
Where Fairy Tales Come True:
In his mission to inspire students, Scott Smith reaps a bountiful harvest
Lander students make magic happen at Disney
Promoting the Pyramid:
Kellie Oâ€™Connell helps Americans choose healthy living
Foundations of Patriotism: Students unearth the American Revolution at Ninety Six Historic Site
2007-2008 Year in Review..............................................................................................................................................2 Learning from Experience...................................................................................................................4 Notes of Distinction............................................................................................................................20
In Search of Knowledge
At Lander University, we are proud to lay claim to a time-honored tradition, the tradition of expecting our students to learn outside the traditional classroom. Though experiential learning is in the news as being innovative and as such is being pursued at colleges and universities across the country, we’ve been putting the concept into practice at Lander for over 100 years. It is a concept that has been integral to Lander since we sent our first student teachers out to observe and practice their skills in area schools. It has been a part of the Lander experience since our students first walked onto a stage to demonstrate their music and elocution abilities before an audience. We want to involve our students in internships, clinical experiences, volunteer efforts and research projects. We believe these initiatives provide students the real-world experience necessary to examine the social, political, scientific and professional issues that they will face as members of a democratic society. In this report, you will read about students and alumni who have benefited from Lander’s support of hands-on learning. You will meet an alumna who is a nutritionist and exercise science majors whose internships have made them highly marketable. We will introduce you to a business major who is a triathlete and to a biology major who is using a NASA grant to develop an innovative mirror for telescopes. You’ll meet history majors who delve into the past at one of our national parks as well as students who are interning at that internationally known theme park in Florida, Disney World. This report, with its focus on “Knowledge Through Hands-on Learning,” will introduce you to our EYE Program, Experience Your Education, which builds on our current clinical, internship and cooperative education initiatives. You will read about our people who have, indeed, experienced their education and have elevated themselves because of it. I hope you will share in my excitement about the learning and growth that is taking place within our student body, both in and out of the classroom.
Daniel W. Ball President
EE Experience Your Education
2007-2008 Year in Review JULY
25 - Zora Neale Hurston, one of the 20th century’s most influential African-American writers, is the subject of English professor Dr. Lloyd Willis’ talk as the first lecturer in the College of Arts and Humanities Distinguished Speaker Series.
23-27 - During Transfer Week, the Office of Admissions streamlines the application process for transfer students. College transcripts are evaluated within 24 hours and admission decisions are made on the spot with next-day faculty advisement and registration available.
27 - The Lander Wind Ensemble opens the university’s student-performance series, which includes dance, drama, music and voice. In its efforts to bring the performing arts to the Greenwood and Lander communities, the university inaugurates a free-admission policy.
AUGUST 16 - Lander becomes the first state college or university in
South Carolina to go tobacco-free both in buildings and on campus grounds. Workers are shown here removing one of the 50 concrete cigarette butt receptacles that are now obsolete. Classes begin today and total fall enrollment is 2,408.
OCTOBER 4 - As this year’s Larry A. Jackson Lecture Series speaker, Dr. Demaree Inglese, who was medical director of the Orleans Parish Prison system during Hurricane Katrina, relates how his staff labored to serve the needs of 7,000 prisoners following the onslaught of the hurricane. His book, No Ordinary Heroes, tells their stories.
18 - Treasure chests and friendly pirates are all part of Tower ClubGreenwood’s Welcome to the Caribbean Fun-raiser. Alumni gather on the lawn of Cambridge Hall for Caribbean food and music and an opportunity to vie for a cruise, jewelry and more.
9 - Greenwood-Lander Performing Arts soars into its new season with the exquisite grace of the North Carolina Dance Theatre. Other audiencepleasers are the Dallas Brass, the Princely Players, the Piano Men and the All-American Boys Chorus. Outreach performances attract more than 6,000 area schoolchildren to the Lander campus.
29 - Fall sports get under way with the women’s volleyball team playing in the Wingate (NC) Invitational. The year sees four teams, men’s golf, soccer and tennis and women’s basketball, advance to national tournaments.
12-13 - College and high school physics teachers converge on campus for the fall conference of the South Atlantic Coast Section of the American Association of Physics Teachers.
SEPTEMBER 13 - Some 35 staff and faculty visit more than 650 students in the residence halls as part of the second annual House Calls program sponsored by Student Affairs. Students receive Lander drawstring bags and information on campus support services related to stress management, health habits and academics. It’s all part of the university’s initiative to make students feel part of the Lander family. 17 - During his State of the University Address, President Daniel Ball outlines new programs and enrollment initiatives and reaffirms Lander’s commitment to providing quality service and education to its students and to the community. Medallions of Honor, which recognize those who have contributed significantly to the university through their time, talent and resources, are presented to Ann Hare, dean of the library and instructional services, who has served Lander with distinction for 39 years, and Dr. DeWitt Stone, a Lander docent who has been instrumental in resurrecting Lander’s Study Abroad program.
13 - Students welcome their families to campus for the annual Parents Day and Fall Festival, which features music, barbecue, carnival games and a fair showcasing student organizations. It’s also Reunion Weekend for alumni as the classes of 1947, ’57, ’67 and ’77 gather to reminisce and reconnect. 18 - Landscape architect and garden historian James Cothran is the speaker for the university’s third annual Arboretum Lecture. The Greenwood native discusses topics from his critically acclaimed book Gardens and Historic Plants of the Antebellum South.
NOVEMBER 8 - Three scholarship recipients, including a biology major, a business major and a political science major, share their experiences during the Eleanor Shiflet Teal Scholarship Banquet which recognizes scholarship recipients, donors and honorees.
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DECEMBER 15 - Commencement speaker Dr. Lex Walters, president
of Piedmont Technical College, encourages Lander’s 124 graduates to use their education to “set sail toward a successful future.” Lander confers honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees on Walters and Dr. Joseph D. Patton, chief executive officer and executive director for GLEAMNS Human Resource Commission. Early childhood education major Kimberly Lynn Dickson of Saluda receives the Thayer Award, the university’s top scholastic honor, graduating summa cum laude.
JANUARY 7 - A new master’s degree program in Montessori education is officially introduced with the opening of spring semester.
11-16 - It’s a Flashback to the good old days as Lander celebrates Homecoming with reunions, races, royalty and games. Alumni honored at the Alumni Association Luncheon are Jackie DeVore Roark, Margaret Ellen Derrick Lee and Jonathan Rowe.
MARCH 3 - During the university’s staff appreciation breakfast, Lander presents it eighth annual staff awards to 20-year veterans Chandler Darling, assistant director of Housing, and Terry Powell, a master craftsman in the Physical Plant. 19 - Senior business majors get a crash course in business and dining manners at the Department of Business Administration’s Etiquette Dinner. Here, students practice their networking techniques. Students also get pointers on dressing professionally and developing good interviewing skills.
14 - Determined to
become healthy and fit, hundreds of area residents gather in Lander’s Chandler Center for the kickoff rally to Activate Greenwood, a free, yearround program sponsored by Greenwood Family YMCA in partnership with Lander and Self Regional Healthcare. Here, a Lander nursing major takes a blood pressure reading for an Activate participant.
APRIL 21 - At the final faculty meeting of the academic year, three faculty awards are announced: chemistry professor Dr. Lynn Deanhardt is named the 2008 Distinguished Professor; nursing professor Dr. Leslie Myers receives the Young Faculty Teaching Award; and English professor Dr. Lloyd Willis receives the Young Faculty Scholar Award.
22 - U.S. Senator Barack Obama, campaigning for the Democratic presidential nomination, brings his message for change to the Lander and Greenwood communities during a rally in Lander’s Horne Arena. Two days later, former U.S. Senator John Edwards stumps for the Democratic nomination when he speaks in Lander’s Cultural Center Auditorium.
24 - Students are recognized for scholarship, leadership and service during the annual Academic Awards and Student Life Banquet in Horne Arena.
MAY 10 - Commencement speaker Harris E. DeLoach Jr., chairman, president and CEO of Sonoco Products Company, urges Lander’s 256 graduates to use the skills they developed at Lander to change their views of the world. Fay Maria Mitchell Hart, a professional counselor and psychotherapist and a 1957 Lander alumna, receives an honorary doctor of humane letters degree. Summa cum laude elementary education graduate Cecilia Jean Bryant of Saluda receives the Thayer Award.
26 - Lander’s newly formed Continuing Education Department launches its first slate of courses during the spring semester. The inaugural class is SAT Doctor, designed for high school students seeking to improve their scores on the Scholastic Aptitude Test.
FEBRUARY 2 - Continuing over two decades of musical tradition, the Music Department hosts the 23rd Annual Lander University Choral Festival. Ten high schools participate. The Clover Choraliers of Clover High School sing their way to first place.
JUNE 16 - High school students get hands-on experience using forensics to fight crime. It’s part of a weeklong camp held in conjunction with the annual Fuji Summer Science and Mathematics Enrichment Program hosted by Lander. There’s also a Fun with Chemistry camp for seventh- and eighth-graders and a nursing camp for high school students.
7 - Dr. Darrell Johnson, superintendent of Greenwood School District 50, is the opening speaker for a series of Black History Month events. - 3 -
Experience Your Education: Expanding a tradition at Lander
Experience Your Education
What if education relied solely on textbooks and lectures? Imagine a doctor graduating from medical school without entering a hospital or working with actual patients; a teacher earning a degree without spending time in a classroom or instructing actual students; a business graduate entering the workforce without ever having interacted with real clients or employees. Without these types of experiences, an education would not be as complete or effective. To be successful in their careers, students need to enhance their textbook knowledge by applying it in real-world settings, an age-old concept that can include internships, apprenticeships, clinicals, study abroad and service learning projects. Whatever their names, these “real-world” experiences have a common thread: they take education beyond the boundaries of the classroom walls. “The idea is to have a contextual, authentic learning situation,” said Lander University’s Dr. Danny McKenzie, vice president for Academic Affairs. “Students first demonstrate in the classroom that they have the knowledge to be successful; then, they take those skills and apply them in a real setting to address real issues in real time.” As a former dean of Lander’s College of Education, McKenzie knows the importance of contextual learning – education majors are required to spend months working in elementary, middle or high school classrooms before receiving a teaching degree. At most colleges and universities, many academic disciplines, from the sciences to the humanities, also require some form of contextual learning experience. “No matter how capable a professor or instructor is with students, it is very difficult to recreate the complexity of the work environment,” McKenzie said. “In terms of gaining real workplace experience, nothing is quite as effective as being there.” While contextual learning experiences have been a longstanding tradition at Lander, a new program in the works will focus both on engaging more students in contextual learning opportunities and on evaluating those experiences based on the standards sought by employers in the workforce. - 4 -
Lander University EYE Program director and assistant professor of biochemistry Dr. James Colbert, left, and vice president for Academic Affairs Dr. Danny McKenzie discuss aspects of EYE, which aims to coordinate and assess the university’s numerous experiential learning opportunities.
The Experience Your Education (EYE) Program, part of the university’s quality enhancement planning, is the brainchild of a committee of Lander faculty, staff, students and community leaders, said Lander’s Dr. James Colbert, director of the EYE Program and an assistant professor of biochemistry. With the development phase nearly complete, officials hope to kick off the program in 2009. “Studies show that experiential opportunities increase learning for many students,” said Colbert, who has taught in higher education for more than 18 years. “It gives them a way to connect with potential careers in which they have an interest; at the same time, the students are gaining valuable experience that can help them transition into the workforce.” Under the program, students who participate in an EYE-approved contextual learning opportunity would be mentored by a faculty member on campus and by a worksite supervisor. Along with an evaluation from their supervisors, students would be required to submit a presentation or project on their experience, which faculty members would use to assess the students’ success. “Each EYE-approved opportunity would have an assessment rubric that faculty members would follow to determine how well the student performed and how much they learned,” Colbert said. “Lander has been using a variety of experiential learning opportunities for many years, but we will now be able to coordinate these activities under one program that will make them assessable and accountable.”
Learning from Experience Each year at Lander, a majority of students take part in experiential learning opportunities such as internships, clinicals and service learning projects, all of which can take place either at the university or off campus. For example, biology students might perform research with scientists at local medical facilities, and student teachers might instruct children in nearby public schools. On campus, communication majors might use their skills in a class project to create advertising materials for a university program or event – a technique Colbert said has been used before in Lander classrooms, and one that could be extended to generate promotional literature for the EYE Program itself. By immersing themselves in these types of authentic environments, students can develop professionalism and self-responsibility and hone their skills of communication, collaboration and problem solving. “Along with knowledge, these are the traits employers recognize as important. When a student can list these skills on a resume, it gives them an advantage over the competition,” McKenzie said. And McKenzie added that the EYE advantage is not just for the students. The community already benefits from working partnerships with the university’s students, and EYE will build on those relationships. “One of Lander’s strategic goals is building linkages with the community, and contextual learning experiences get our students out in the community where they can build those linkages,” he said. As the program prepares for its inauguration on the Lander campus, McKenzie said, “We have the capacity to make EYE a signature program at Lander.”
Teamwork Builds Confidence When Renee Newton graduated from Lander in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in physical education, she took with her a resume that showcased her leadership skills as well as plenty of hands-on learning experiences. As a member of the Teaching Fellows Program, the premier program for education majors in South Carolina, she benefited from the leadership development and mentoring offered by the program. As a student assistant in physical education/teacher education content courses, she learned responsibility as well as the ability to motivate. As a member of the Physical Education and Exercise Studies Club and various intramural teams, she experienced the joy that comes from playing a sport, and she learned the importance of teamwork. Today Newton is putting the Lander education she gained both in and out of the classroom to work in her roles as head women’s volleyball coach at Greenwood High School and as a physical education teacher at Westview Middle School.
Travel Creates Opportunity
Lander chemistry graduate Alexandra Foguth, a doctoral candidate in material science and engineering at Clemson University, is among 30 students in that discipline selected from across the country to receive a $120,000 National Science Foundation graduate research fellowship. The Lake Wylie native said, “My extracurricular activities at Lander may have tipped the scales in my favor because applicants are judged on the basis of their academic achievements and experience as volunteers.” Foguth, who graduated with honors from Lander in 2007, was president of Lander’s American Chemical Society chapter for two years, a resident assistant, a peer tutor and a counselor in the Fuji Summer Science and Mathematics Enrichment program at Lander. She also took part in chemistry education programs for youth in the Greenwood area.
With three jobs, a paid internship and a 13-hour course load, senior health care management major Kyle Hicks manages to combine hands-on experience with his education at Lander. Two of his jobs are in health care, and one is clerical. His latest endeavor, an internship at the Greenwood Genetic Center, is in human resources. Now Hicks has ventured abroad to experience firsthand the state of a troubled African nation. This summer he traveled to Zimbabwe with his mentor and Lander professor of history Dr. Kenneth Mufuka. There Hicks witnessed the economic and political struggles of Mufuka’s home nation. He met many Zimbabweans throughout his stay and talked extensively with the U.S. ambassador to that country. Learning in the classroom, on the job and through travel, Kyle Hicks has broadened his perspective and his opportunities. - 5 -
Star Search: Knowledge
Ankoma Anderson’s telescope mirror research could change the way we view space
Lander University senior chemistry major Ankoma Anderson of Greenwood, seated, received a South Carolina Space Grant Consortium and NASAsponsored grant to conduct research on the development of plastic telescope mirrors. His research has been conducted under the guidance of Lander assistant professor of organic chemistry Dr. Lisa Brodhacker, also pictured.
The heavens. The cosmos. The final frontier. Though it has many nicknames, few words can adequately describe the mystery and beauty of space. Throughout history, space has been a constant source of inspiration and amazement for mankind, and for centuries, the telescope has been an invaluable tool in the quest to understand the universe. Professional astronomers and backyard stargazers have used the devices to learn about our own world by viewing galaxies swirling light years away. But for all the universal truths that have been discovered, there is an unknown amount of information still waiting to be revealed, and scientists are limited by how far their telescopes can reach. What might be discovered if telescopes could see farther? Research performed this year at Lander University could one day help answer that question. Lander senior chemistry major Ankoma Anderson of Greenwood has spent the summer and fall semester studying the production and use of specially shaped, plastic telescope mirrors – a technique that could make telescopes lighter, more powerful and more affordable. “The research being done is not directly related to space, but it could change the way we view it,” Anderson said. “The goal is to establish a new, more efficient way to make telescope mirrors.” Anderson, who is president of Lander’s award-winning chapter of the American Chemical Society, grew up with a love for business, but the lure of a booming job market in the science industry convinced him to study chemistry instead. It was in one of Lander’s science classrooms that he first met Dr. Lisa Brodhacker, assistant professor of organic chemistry, who quickly realized Anderson’s potential. “I was a student with an inquiring mind, and I asked a lot of questions,” Anderson said, laughing. “She was willing to answer those questions for me, and she really took an interest in me.” It was Brodhacker who introduced Anderson to the idea of researching the use of plastic epoxy for the production of telescope mirrors, an idea that was an extension of work that Brodhacker did while in graduate school at the
University of South Carolina. “I’ve always loved space,” Brodhacker said. “I was always the one who would sit in the grass or on the roof of my house with binoculars and a telescope, looking at the stars.” Because telescope mirrors are typically made of glass, they can be heavy and expensive to produce. “Plastic is much lighter, but it is still a challenge to create the curved, parabolic surface required for the telescope to produce clear, accurate images,” Brodhacker said. One method – the method Anderson’s research has focused on – involves spinning the epoxy on top of a liquid surface to create a parabolic shape. When the epoxy cures, its surface is coated with aluminum to make it reflective. This method could eventually make it possible to place larger, more powerful telescopes into orbit. “The mirrors would no longer be limited to the size of the shuttle’s cargo bay,” Brodhacker said. “Unlike glass mirrors that are inflexible, you could roll up an uncured epoxy mirror, place it in a shuttle and then unroll it and cure it in space.” It’s an innovative idea that caught the attention of the South Carolina Space Grant Consortium (SCSGC), which awarded Anderson a $5,000 research grant for the project. Composed of more than a dozen educational institutions across the state, the SCSGC welcomed Lander as a member in 2008, with Brodhacker serving as the
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One of the most important parts of Anderson’s research has been keeping detailed notes and calculations from his experiments with the epoxy solutions. Anderson said his new note-taking skills will be handy when he enters graduate school.
university’s SCSGC coordinator. Anderson was the first Lander student to receive funding from the group, which aims to strengthen the state’s aerospace-related research infrastructure by promoting exploration, education and public service related to the NASA mission, according to the SCSGC Web site. Consortium members are eligible to compete for numerous NASA- and SCSGC-funded research grants, programs and travel opportunities to NASA centers. With the financial resources provided by the grant and the instructional support from Brodhacker, Anderson spent up to four days in the lab each week throughout the summer studying his notes and preparing epoxy samples. He and Brodhacker even took a few samples to Charleston to test in an industrial spinner. “The most interesting part of the project has been seeing the results,” Anderson said. “The first few times we tried to cure the epoxy, it didn’t work. But when it finally did work, it was a ‘wow’ moment. It gave me the feeling that this was possible.” Brodhacker said Lander is the only educational institution she is aware of that is studying the production of plastic telescope mirrors for imaging in visible light. If the pair can yield successful results, their groundbreaking research could one day be used by scientists at NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The mirror production process is time-consuming, and though his work is not yet complete, Anderson said the entire experience has been “enlightening.” “I didn’t know if I would like the research, but I’ve found that it has helped me develop my independence as a scientist. You have to take the initiative to go to the lab and do the work without someone watching over you every minute,” he said. “Independence will be necessary in graduate school and beyond.” Brodhacker said she has enjoyed working closely with her student, adding that the project will be something Anderson can look back on with pride.
“I think Ankoma has really grown as both a student and a scientist through this experience,” she said. “What he is doing here is what I did in graduate school, and it is a great way for him to prepare for his future.” Anderson hopes to take his new skills to USC following his graduation from Lander, and he is keeping an “open mind” about his future. “I’ve learned that you have to expect the unexpected and be open to new ideas and possibilities.” And one future possibility is something that, for Anderson, would truly be out-of-this-world. “It would be such an honor to see NASA use our mirror research one day,” he said, smiling. “That would definitely be something that I would never stop talking about.”
Anderson’s research has focused on spinning a plastic epoxy on top of a liquid surface to create a parabolic shape, which is required for accurate telescope imaging in visible light. When the epoxy cures, its surface is coated with aluminum to make it reflective. This method could eventually make it possible to create lighter, more powerful telescopes.
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Scott Moore Smith has spent the last quarter-century serving Lander’s students, faculty and staff as the minister for the university’s Baptist Collegiate Ministries. Many of Smith’s former and current students were on hand at the 2008 State of the University Address to witness Smith receive Lander’s Medallion of Honor. Here, those students give Smith a congratulatory hug following the ceremony.
Sowing Seeds of Good Will: Knowledge
In his mission to inspire students, Scott Smith reaps a bountiful harvest
For the past 23 years, Scott Moore Smith has served the Lander community as the university’s Baptist Collegiate Minister. But for students, faculty and staff who’ve crossed paths with Smith, he is more than a campus minister – he’s a friend, a mentor and an inspiration. “I remember walking into the Baptist Collegiate Ministry Center (formerly the Baptist Student Union) as a student for the first time. The first person that greeted me was Scott Smith. From that first encounter, Scott made an impact upon my life,” wrote Lander Class of ’93 alumnus Jimmy Sanders, who now lives and pastors in Georgia. “Not a week goes by that I don’t reflect on my time at Lander and the influence that he (Smith) had on my life
and countless others,” Sanders added. A native of Pendleton, S.C., Smith was commissioned to the Ministry by Pendleton First Baptist Church in 1973. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Furman University in 1977, followed by a master’s from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., in 1979. Before coming on board at Lander in 1985, Smith served in ministering capacities at the Baptist College of Charleston, now known as Charleston Southern University, and The Citadel. He was a consultant for Special Missions Ministries with the South Carolina Baptist Convention in Columbia. He and his wife, Judith Lynne Cherry, are members of South Main Street Baptist Church in Greenwood. In September, Lander President Dr. Daniel Ball presented Smith with the Lander University Medallion of Honor, - 8 -
reserved for those who have contributed to the university in a significant way through the giving of time, talents, energies and personal resources. “I love this university and I love getting to know the students that I meet each year,” said Smith. His passion for reaching out, Smith said, can be traced to his childhood. “My parents taught me that it was important to do things for others and to get involved in the community,” he said. “When you live in that kind of environment and see that modeled every day, it makes a lasting impression on you.” He has strived to make that same impression on the many faculty, staff and students he has befriended at Lander. The university’s Baptist Collegiate Ministry (BCM) connects with approximately 200 students weekly, through programs such as a Monday luncheon Bible study group, student-led worship services and weekend activities. Throughout the year, about 700-900 students are touched in some way by the services and programs offered by the ministry. Smith also makes weekly rounds on campus to visit with faculty and staff. The BCM is open to students from all faiths and backgrounds. Smith said this allows for a healthy diversity in membership that has been vital to the organization’s success on campus. Throughout the week, the white brick building – located just off campus at the corner of Durst and West Cambridge avenues – becomes a popular gathering place for students, with Smith’s small office often serving as the hub of the activity. “Though Scott technically held an office in the Baptist Student Center, we always laughed when people referred to that room as his,” wrote 2003 Lander alumna Kimberlee Duncan of Gilbert. “In actuality, it was the place that I – and many other students – knew as home.” One of Smith’s major goals is to encourage students to get involved on campus and beyond, whether through the BCM programs, university organizations or outside opportunities. “I try to stay in the background and let the students lead each other. The point is to transform them into leaders and followers of Christ so they can have a positive influence on the university and community,” he said. “You do this by getting out there, getting active and helping others.” For this reason, Smith said, members of the BCM make a mission trip each year to an area within the United States. Among some of the memorable trips for the group are: a trip to Boston, Mass., to work with AIDS patients; working in a youth prison in Detroit, Mich.; relief work in New Orleans, La., following Hurricane Katrina; and a trip to the coal mines of West Virginia. The journeys, he said, often change the students’ views of themselves, their communities and their fellow man. “Many times the students need the mission trip more than it needs them,” Smith said, adding his own children – 2006 Lander alumna Cherry Lynne Smith and Lander senior Charles Thomas Smith – have taken part in many
Smith has led regular mission trips with Lander students to cities across the United States. Pictured, Lander students pose at the subway T-stop in Boston, Mass., on a mission trip in the late 1980s.
of the trips. “It enriches their lives. You aren’t the same person when you return.” Class of ’93 alumnus Jimmy Sanders can remember each of the mission trips he took as a student under Smith’s guidance. “Going to new places strengthened our camaraderie,” Sanders said, “and it gave us an opportunity to make a difference, even if in little ways.” In an effort to keep students and alumni informed of BCM activities, Smith sends newsletters to subscribers. He has also created Facebook pages for freshmen and alumni, which he said have been a success in building new friendships and reviving old ones. “It’s fun to hear from the alumni and see how they’ve changed,” Smith said. “No matter how long it’s been since they’ve been here, in my mind they’re still 18-22 years old.” Even years after his students leave the university, many continue to reach out to Smith. He has attended alumni’s weddings, celebrated in the births of their children, offered them strength in times of loss and given them advice in their lives. With a life so devoted to the nurturing of youth, it is fitting that one Lander alumnus often thinks of Smith as a farmer sowing a crop. “Scott carefully watches the seeds as they leave his guiding hand,” wrote Brad Vest, a 1991 Lander alumnus now serving as associate director of Student Programs at Appalachian State University. “If he notices the seeds do not land on fertile soil, he will go and retrieve them and replant them. If he sees the seeds are being lost to the wind, he will go and find them and plant them. In other words, Scott sees the seeds placed in his basket as being a gift from God. Those seeds are us, and Scott sees us as any farmer sees a crop: a field of possibility.” “I am sure,” Vest wrote, “that there are many folks on campus who, at the mention of Scott’s name, will smile immediately. They can tell of how he has touched the lives of students and that, because of him, Lander – and the world – are better places.”
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Promoting the Pyramid: Knowledge
Kellie O’Connell helps Americans choose healthy living
Kellie O’Connell had planned to become a medical doctor so she could help people understand and manage their health. But a semester of study abroad led the Lander University biology major to a different career choice, though she is still helping people manage their health. The 1999 Lander graduate is a registered dietitian and has been a nutritionist with the United States Department of Agriculture in Alexandria, Va., since 2005. Her job is persuading people that what they eat affects their health. The Rock Hill native came to Lander as a business major with a minor in dance. “Lander was the only school I applied to,” she said. “After visiting the university, I decided the campus environment would permit me to balance my interests in academics, athletics and dance. And I would be close to home.” She was a cheerleader in her freshman year, then a member of the Lander Dancers for three years. “I hoped to open a dance school,” she said. When she became interested in medicine, she switched her major from business to biology. Because she was taking pre-med courses and studying dance, one of her professors christened her “The Dancing Doctor.” During her junior year, O’Connell was accepted into Lander’s Honors International Program, and she spent a semester at the University of Plymouth in England. It was there that she realized her interest in health science was less about Lander graduate Dr. Kellie O’Connell is a dietitian and nutritionist for the federal program that is responsible for establishing and updating dietary guidelines such as the pyramid food guidance system.
general medicine and more about human metabolism and nutrition. After graduating from Lander with a biology degree, O’Connell taught sixth-grade science for a year in North Carolina’s Charlotte-Mecklenburg school district, where she was nominated for the district’s “New Teacher of the Year” award. When she enrolled in graduate school at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2001, she found the research experience she obtained at Lander gave her a head start toward completing academic requirements for a doctorate in nutrition. Her senior year at Lander, O’Connell had been a research assistant to Dr. Leonard Lundquist, who, at the time, was chair of the Biology Department. They collaborated on research to create a cryo-preservation method for storing adrenal cells harvested from rabbits. Their project was the subject of a presentation O’Connell made to the South Carolina Academy of Science. Lundquist, who was also O’Connell’s adviser, said she was able to include the research project and presentation on her resume, which gave her an advantage when she applied for admission to graduate school. While he was teaching at Lander, it was Lundquist’s practice when applying for research grants to include participation by undergraduates because, he said, the experience provides hands-on learning for students who plan to enter a research-based field. O’Connell said because of her experience as Dr. Lundquist’s assistant, UNCG allowed her to begin working sooner on her postgraduate research requirements. She chose to study nutrition, convinced that it offered more career opportunities, but she was also motivated by personal experience. “Nutrition was an issue for me because I was overweight in elementary school,” she said. “When I was in seventh grade, I dieted, lost weight and became more athletic.” In high school, she continued a healthy eating regimen under the supervision of a registered dietitian. At UNCG, she received the 2004 Graduate Student of the Year award for her dissertation on school system interventions to improve food choices and prevent obesity among middle school students. Research shows that obesity-related complications are the second leading cause
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Dr. Kellie O’Connell promotes diet and activity as important elements in managing a healthy weight.
of death in the U.S., and that 15 percent of young people ages 12 to 19 are obese, a condition likely to carry over into adulthood. Nutrition is an important puzzle piece in the obesity epidemic, and O’Connell’s research showed that changes to cafeteria food choices coupled with nutrition education can improve healthy food choices made by middle school children, choices such as eating more vegetables. “People are always frustrated about weight,” she said. “It is important to understand that managing a healthy weight includes diet and activity. The science tells us we have to make lifestyle changes.” After receiving her Ph.D., O’Connell worked at Duke University’s Diet and Fitness Center, a residential obesity treatment facility. Later, she joined the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, where she specializes in national nutrition policies and programs to encourage healthy eating. The center is responsible for many federal projects such as the MyPyramid Food Guidance System and the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which provides recommendations for food choices and physical activity to help reduce the risk of chronic disease and is the basis for all federal
nutrition programs. She is a member of the management team coordinating deliberations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, which will write an advisory report for the Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of Health and Human Services. Following the committee’s work, O’Connell will work with a policy team to help develop the 2010 release of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. O’Connell has made presentations on nutrition and dietary guidelines to Russia’s Institute of Nutrition and to Chinese health and nutrition magazine editors. She also contributed to a nine-part film series on nutrition and physical activity aired by South Carolina Educational Television in 2006, and she continues to collaborate with her home state to promote nutrition education. Despite O’Connell’s busy schedule, she still finds time for dancing, her favorite physical activity. She taught dance for a year at the University City YMCA in Charlotte and is now a member of a contemporary dance troupe called J Ruhl Dance Collaborations Company in Alexandria. She continues to support her alma mater and serves as secretary of Lander’s Young Alumni Association. When asked if she has second thoughts about not pursuing a career in medicine, she said, “Although doctors and dietitians both get to work with their patients oneon-one, I feel fortunate to have the opportunity to also reach a larger audience – Americans – through work at the USDA.” - 11 -
Man on the Move: Knowledge
Triathlete Cameron Dorn does business abroad
Lander student Cameron Dorn likes a physical challenge as well as an academic challenge. As a student at Ware Shoals High School, Dorn played football and basketball because, he explained, “I’ve always been interested in running.” That interest has become almost an obsession with Dorn who, at the age of 20, is one of the top-ranked triathletes in South Carolina. He entered his first triathlons in 2007, and after competing in five events, he was rated number one overall among 16- to 19-year-old competitors. He also qualified for the triathlon’s elite level which enables him to compete for purses of $5,000 or greater in USA Triathlonsanctioned events. Triathlons include swimming, biking and running. Dorn had competed in 30 events by the middle of 2008 and planned to enter another 20 before year’s end. When asked why he is attracted to triathlons he said they enable him to push his mind and body to the limit. The 6-foot-1, 178-pound Dorn is a member of the TYB (Tri Your Best) Triathlon team, which includes 10 athletes who compete in high profile triathlons and other events.
Dorn’s 2008 record has been outstanding. He won the YMCA Sprint series in South Carolina by competing in five of seven triathlons and finishing first in four of them and second in the fifth event. In April, he was a last-minute entry in the Greenwood Medicine Chase 5K race and finished first overall. He said he learned about the event shortly after he got up that morning and barely made it to the starting line in time to register. He also won the Healthy Heart 8K race in Abbeville, came in sixth of 294 competitors who finished the Parris Island triathlon at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot and won a triathlon on Hilton Head. He is ranked fifth among the 36 male elite competitors in the South Carolina triathlon series. This spring, while he was on a training run in Greenwood, Dorn set a personal record by running 26 miles, the length of a marathon and the longest distance he had run up to that point. “I was pretty tired afterward,” he said. But now he has his eye on branching out into marathons. He plans to enter a couple of events before the end of the year in hopes of qualifying for the April 2009 Boston Marathon, the oldest marathon in the nation, which attracts a field of 25,000 runners.
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way across Europe combining Dorn’s day usually begins sightseeing with his physical at 6 a.m. when he heads training regimen. He biked out on the first half of through Southern England, his twice-a-day training where Winchester is located, schedule at Lander and the and visited Paris, Venice, BrusGreenwood Family YMCA sels and Bruge in Belgium, where he works part time Wales, Scotland and the Czech as a personal trainer. “My Republic. day is busy,” he said, but he In August, Dorn spent two has mastered coordinating weeks in Brazil visiting his classes and study time with girlfriend and Lander classmate his training routine and Anna Luiza Zaia, who is from competitive events which Sao Paulo and is a member are held on weekends. of the Lady Bearcats tennis While Dorn enjoys a top team. While in Brazil, Dorn ranking as a triathlete, he took time off from training and has also distinguished himCameron Dorn began competing in triathlons in 2007 and within a year he reached the sport’s elite level and was ranked as one spent his visit there enjoying self academically. He is a of the top triathletes in South Carolina. the sights. junior majoring in business Because of a desire to share with a marketing managehis triathlon experiences with other Lander students, ment emphasis and has a 3.3 grade point average. He is a Dorn has formed a triathlon club under the auspices of LIFE scholarship recipient, and in his freshman year, he the university’s Campus Recreation Department. He and was selected to participate in the Lander President’s Leadthe other members of the club will participate in fitness ership Program. After graduation, he plans to continue his activities and work with young people in the community. education and obtain a master’s degree in international As for the future, Dorn said he will continue to divide business marketing. his time between academics, his part-time job at the Dorn said the quality of the university’s business proGreenwood YMCA and the rigorous training schedule gram is what attracted him to Lander, plus it is only about that helps keep him in top physical condition. “My per15 miles by car or bike from the campus to his home in sonal growth is directly linked to Lander’s Study Abroad Waterloo. program and competition as a triathlete. Those and other He left South Carolina for Britain at the start of his experiences have given me a strong sense of self-discipline sophomore year and spent the fall semester at the Univerand self-motivation.” sity of Winchester as part of Lander’s Study Abroad program. One of 20 Lander students who have studied at Winchester since 2006, Dorn said, “My interaction with the British and other Cameron Dorn spent a semester at the University of Winchester in Britain as part foreign students gave me a broader of Lander’s Study Abroad program and perspective of the world. Lander kept up with his rigorous training routine emphasizes developing a worldby bicycling through several European view through experience outside countries including the Czech Republic. the classroom.” Since 1988, more than 120 Lander students have taken classes at five colleges and universities in Britain and one in Spain. Their courses abroad count toward their Lander graduation requirements. Dr. DeWitt Stone, director of Lander’s Study Abroad program, said, “It is an enriching experience for students to live in another country and attend classes with students from that country.” Dorn took his bicycle with him to Winchester and pedaled his - 13 -
Exercise Your Options: Knowledge
Students lead movement toward lifelong fitness
What is your goal in life? If you had your dream job, what would it be? These are questions Wesley Commons Wellness/Lifestyle Manager Tonya Thomas asks Lander students who apply for internships at the community’s Wellness Complex. They are the same questions that Thomas, a 2003 Lander graduate, asked herself as she began her course-work in exercise science at Lander. Her answer to the first question didn’t come immediately. However, after working with a local assisted living facility and taking course work on aging as part of the curriculum at Lander, Thomas focused on a goal to learn more about geriatric wellness. Her interest led her to an internship at Wesley Commons, a continuing care retirement community. By the time she graduated from Lander, the internship had turned into a full-time job. In the years that followed, Thomas has been instrumental in exposing numerous Lander students to the experience of working with the Wesley Commons wellness program. In fact, each semester the program hosts two Lander exercise science students.
Wesley Commons involves Lander exercise science interns in activities available to residents at the continuing care retirement community. Here, student intern Justen Evans, second from right, assists Wellness/ Lifestyle Manager Tonya Thomas, third from right, with a fitness class.
“From personal experience, I know what the interns want to learn, as well as what they need to learn” said Thomas. “They end up learning a lot about the geriatric population through Wesley Commons’ physical therapy and wellness programs, where we focus on holistic wellness – mental, physical, spiritual and social wellness.” When student interns begin working with Thomas, they receive a comprehensive tour of the Wesley Commons campus. Spanning over 100 acres, the campus is home to an average of 450 residents, who live in a mixture of independent living areas and assisted living accommodations. All areas have access to wellness activities. Residents participate in weekly group exercise, weight room and swim programs. Wesley Commons’ 8,000-square-foot Wellness Complex houses most of these activities and wellness staff and interns offer 30 fitness classes per week. Paired with a wellness staff member, Lander interns get to experience all aspects of the center’s wellness program. “For example,” said Thomas, “we ask students to participate in the fitness classes, and they also get to teach some of the classes.” Beyond the classes, students are given a project that is specifically tailored to their interests. Lander senior exercise science major Justen Evans, who interned with Thomas this summer, works part time as a personal trainer at the YMCA. There, he generally works with individuals wanting to shed a few pounds or build muscle tone. At Wesley Commons, many residents are more interested in weight maintenance or gain, and in improving their balance and mobility. For his Wesley Commons project, Evans helped residents update their personal exercise programs. He also developed programs for residents just beginning a fitness regimen. The benefits of his project were twofold. Because the wellness staff was trying to add more one-on-one fitness opportunities for their residents, Evans was able to help gauge resident interest in personal training. At the same time, he was able to hone his skills in working with an older population. The staff anticipated that Evans would assist 10 people, but he ended up working with 20. “My motivational skills as a personal trainer helped me get the Wesley Commons residents active,” said Evans.
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Tonya Thomas, a 2003 Lander graduate, assists a Wesley Commons resident with exercises at the community’s Wellness Complex.
Lander students find that internships give them experience and self-confidence, both of which are important when they enter the job market. Tiffany Keyes, right, a 2006 Lander graduate, was hired by Wellness Works after interning there, and she also works at Wesley Commons as a fitness assistant.
“They were ready to learn from me even though I’m a young guy just starting out. In the end I learned as much from them as they did from me.” Evans explained that the residents he worked with, whether through personal training or in fitness classes, never hesitated to give him pointers on how he could better teach them. Residents were also interested in learning more about him personally. “Before the interns get here we make sure they understand the expectations of the residents,” Thomas said. “The residents want to learn about the students, and about their backgrounds, and they want them participating in classes. The residents see this as a great learning experience for the interns, and they really enjoy meeting the students and talking with them.” For Evans this exchange was reciprocal. He said of the residents, “I loved hearing their stories.” Internship experiences are a perfect example of the value students get from “applying what they’ve learned in their course work at Lander,” said Dr. Cathryn Dooly, chair of Lander’s Department of Physical Education and Exercise Studies (PEES). “We’re taking them out of the classroom and laboratory and putting them in a real-life setting, ... and they are being placed in situations where they can potentially get a job.” The Lander exercise science program connects students with many opportunities for experiential learning in a variety of wellness and fitness settings. Dooly has placed students in nearly 40 businesses throughout the Upstate, where they gain experience in occupational, physical and aquatic therapy, and industrial and cardiac rehabilitation. They also work in general fitness and sports training environments. About 25 students are enrolled in internships each fall and spring and 15 in the summer. Exercise science majors must complete internship assignments as part of their degree requirements. “A solid internship program will make our students more marketable,” said Dooly. “The more varied the internships students take part in, the more experience those students will take to the workplace.” Thomas, who, as a student, benefited from Lander’s internship program, and who now, in her role at Wesley Commons, mentors current Lander students, shared two suggestions for interns and for those beginning their careers – “Put yourself in a position where you can continuously learn as well as grow,” and “always put yourself in a job that you enjoy.” - 15 -
Lander student Miranda Asson, left, and a college program friend pose with one of Disney’s beloved characters, Timon from The Lion King, at the Disney World theme park in Florida.
Where Fairy Tales Come True: Knowledge
Lander students make magic happen at Disney
It is one of the world’s most visited attractions, drawing in millions who want to experience the “most magical place on Earth.” But for some Lander University students, the Disney World experience is more than a fairy-tale vacation – it’s an educational adventure. Each year, a handful of Lander students head to Orlando, Fla., to take part in the Walt Disney World College Program, a unique pairing of academics and real-world experience in leadership, diversity, and personal and professional development, according to the program guide. “The program offers students an opportunity to mature and gain valuable experience in the workforce,” said Lander director of Career Services Jennifer P. Turman, who serves as an adviser to program enrollees. “It gives students the chance to live on the Disney campus, to learn about the strategies behind Disney’s success and to build a strong work ethic through their roles with the company.” The Disney college program, open to students from all majors, has trained thousands of people from nations across the globe. About five Lander students are accepted each year, and the program acts as a noncredit co-op class that allows the students to keep full-time status while
away from the university, Turman said. For five to seven months, participants live in company-sponsored housing near the world-famous complex, and they receive Disney training in a variety of areas, including company history, guest services, problem solving, communication, teamwork, personal responsibility and self-confidence. Participants then hone those skills in Disney’s 47-square-mile “learning laboratory,” complete with theme parks, water parks and a dining, entertainment and retail complex. The students work in entry-level, front-line positions such as operations, food and beverage service, merchandise, recreation, hospitality and entertainment, according to the guide. “It really was a magical experience,” said Lander senior mass communication major Miranda Asson of Greer, who participated in the Disney college program in 2006. “Even though you’re working, you still get pulled in by the atmosphere at Disney. You feel like a kid again and that anything is possible.” Asson is a resident assistant at Lander and is a member of the Student Life Committee, mass communication club and Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority. She has also been involved with the University Singers, gospel choir and the University Program Council. Like other Disney program participants, she had to apply, audition and be interviewed
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before she was accepted into the emony to “earn their ears,” and they are eligible to apply for advanced inprogram. With a background that ternships with Disney, which provide includes school theatre, music and opportunities for students to work in journalism, Asson knew which projobs more closely related to their colgram division she wanted to take on lege majors, according to the company. – entertainment. The program is also open to college For about nine hours each day, graduates, and Lander alumnus Lonnie Asson worked in theme parks and Nesbitt of Columbia packed his bags restaurants, enhancing guests’ expefor Disney World after earning a mass riences with Disney’s beloved cast of communication degree from Lander in characters, including Chip and Dale, 2007. the mice from Cinderella, Timon Lander senior mass communication major from The Lion King and Terk from He said he became curious about Miranda Asson of Greer, participated in the Walt Disney World College Program in 2006. Tarzan. To be effective as a characthe Disney program when several of She says her experience was “magical.” ter performer, Asson said she had his college friends participated. He’ll to learn to maneuver through the complete his internship in January crowds and interact with guests using only body language. of 2009, after spending a year learning about everything “I love communicating and I love talking,” she said, from merchandising to attractions. laughing. “One of the hardest parts was learning how “My experience has been wonderful, and I’ve built to express myself without speaking, which takes a lot of relationships with great people,” said Nesbitt, who was practice.” a member of Lander’s University Program Council and In addition to their Disney training and internships, the Omega Psi Phi fraternity while at the university. “For participants can enroll in the program’s collegiate acame, the best part has been the opportunity for personal demic courses, which are recommended for credit by the growth.” American Council on Education. Asson studied market Nesbitt said he plans to turn his program experience ing and communications, which she was able to transfer into an actual career in events and entertainment with for co-op and elective credit at Lander. “The classes alDisney. “I’m already applying the skills I’ve learned here lowed us to network with business executives and make to my daily life,” he said. “Disney teaches you how to enprofessional contacts that could lead to career opportunijoy what you are doing and to make the best out of where ties in the future,” Asson said. you are.” Lander’s Turman said one of the most valuable aspects Asson hopes her Disney experience will be just the of the program is the diversity its participants experience magic she needs to begin a career in the entertainment in the parks and in the classrooms. “These students are industry following her graduation from Lander. Until exposed to a wide variety of nationalities, languages, culthen, she is serving as the Disney college program repretures and backgrounds – from both the people who visit sentative for the Lander campus, helping to recruit more the Disney parks and from the other students who take students into the program that has, for Asson, been a fairy part in the college program,” she said. “This exposure tale come true. gives them the characteristics needed to become success “I learned a lot and I made great friends,” she said. “I ful in a global and diverse economy.” am so glad that I took part in the most magical internship Graduates of the college program take part in a cerever.”
Lander graduate Lonnie Nesbitt, ’07, began the Disney college program after earning a mass communication degree from Lander. He’ll soon complete a full year in the program and hopes to begin a job with Disney.
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Foundations of Patriotism: Knowledge
Students unearth the American Revolution at Ninety Six Historic Site
The day was May 21, 1781, and Gen. Nathanael Greene had arrived in the small town of Ninety Six located in the backcountry of South Carolina. He traveled in the company of more than 1,000 patriot soldiers. The task before these men was difficult but it was clear – to fell the British loyalist forces securing the town. On the same land 227 years later, George Rambo stands holding a musket similar to those held by soldiers in Greene’s army. This weapon is one of many artifacts the Lander University history major and Greenwood native has familiarized himself with while working at the Ninety Six National Historic Site. As a part-time employee, Rambo’s duties include manning the visitor center, scheduling tours and patrolling the more than 1,000 acres that make up the site. “There’s a lot of history out here,” he said. “I learn something new every day.” In addition to learning, Rambo has not hesitated to teach. He gives presentations to visitors on 18th century weapons, including muskets, rifles and cannons. Giving a presentation while holding a musket or standing beside a cannon allows Rambo to immerse himself and those around him in a time when American patriotism was being defined for the first time. “You can open a book
Lander history major and Greenwood native George Rambo works part time at the Ninety Six National Historic Site.
and read about a place like historic Ninety Six,” said Eric Williams, the site’s chief ranger and historian, “but when you actually visit the site, walk the grounds and see things like the old road beds that fed into the town, the earthen, star-shaped fort, and many of the same landscapes 18th century people saw, the depth of what you learn is tremendously increased.” The U.S. Congress designated the Ninety Six site as part of the National Park Service in 1976. Since then the site has served as a field laboratory for students of all ages, and for Lander history majors like Rambo, the site has provided hands-on opportunities for the study and promotion of a specific historical period. Michael Balsiger, a Lander junior history major, recently completed an internship at Star Fort, the name locals use to refer to the Ninety Six site. As a child his mother would take him to an old Revolutionary War battleground in his hometown of Sumter. There the two would search for musket and cannon balls, sparking his interest in history and, particularly, his interest in the history of warfare in the United States. These interests eventually led him to his field of study at Lander and his experience at Ninety Six. As an intern at Star Fort, Balsiger was charged with bringing some of that site’s history into the digital age. Armed with a laptop, he transcribed the handwritten notes of Lander professor emeritus of history Dr. Marvin Cann, who had researched the 18th century South Carolina backcountry and Ninety Six for a book he was writing. As he typed out Cann’s notes, Balsiger said he became “more and more immersed in the history of the park.” He was particularly interested in the tactics of warfare used by patriot soldiers who laid siege to Star Fort. “For instance,” said Balsiger, “the patriots dug a series of trenches so they could approach the British stronghold undercover.” Balsiger explained that Colonel Thaddeus Kosciuszko, a native of Poland who orchestrated the patriot siege on the fort, instructed his soldiers to dig a tunnel under the Star Fort’s wall and pack the end with gunpowder. They would then explode the gunpowder in hopes of breeching the walls.
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Michael Balsiger, Lander history major and Star Fort intern, stands in front of the Black Swan Tavern, an exhibit depicting one aspect of life in the 18th century Carolina backcountry. Below, left, Eric Williams, Star Fort chief park ranger, shows Balsiger how to load an 18th-century-era cannon.
When Lander students such as Rambo and Balsiger join the staff at the Ninety Six Historic Site, they go through an orientation that lasts about a week. Therein they are asked to familiarize themselves with the park through a brochure and a video and to read the book Ninety Six: A Historical Narrative by Jerome Greene. Then Williams gives them a tour of the park. The orientation prepares them for the many visitors who tour the park. Williams said that the 50,000 visitors the park averages each year come from across the nation and from abroad. Some have researched their genealogy and traced their ancestry back to South Carolina, while others might just see the interstate sign for the Ninety Six Historic Site and decide to check it out. Visitors also come to see or take part in the various re-enactment activities the park hosts annually. Ultimately the park visitors bring with them their own stories of America’s past, allowing Lander’s history students and others working at the site to learn more about Ninety Six’s place in American history as a whole. “Working at the park is very beneficial because you get to talk to people from all over the United States,” said 1994 Lander history graduate and park employee Grey
Wood. “The experience has given me a broad knowledge of what happened around Ninety Six, the state and the country.” Wood’s association with the Ninety Six Historic Site began in 1990 when he was a Lander student. He worked at the site as a park ranger for several years and is now responsible for park maintenance. His experience exemplifies the importance of applied learning. According to Dr. William Ramsey, chair of Lander’s Department of History and Philosophy, the experience is beneficial in two ways. “First,” said Ramsey, “it helps students see that historical study has applications beyond the classroom and that public or applied history offers a real and vital service to the community and the state. Secondly, it gives them actual work experience that can put them ahead of other candidates for a variety of jobs, including museum curatorship, historic preservation and historical interpretation.” Grey Wood, a 1994 Lander Surrounded by memories history graduate, is head of of the dawn of U.S. history park maintenance at Star Fort. and American patriotism, students like Rambo and Balsiger walk away with more than just work experience at the Ninety Six site. They leave the park with a distinct impression of just how alive the centuries-old history at Ninety Six still is and how that mark on America’s past pulses through the timeline of the entire nation.
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2007-2008 Notes of Distinction
Historian Sifts Through Ashes of Yamasee War
Lander Addresses Shortage of Special Education Teachers Lander University received a $100,000 grant from the South Carolina Department of Education for participation in a program to help fill a critical need for special education teachers in the state. The program is called Project CREATE, an acronym for Centers for the Re-Education and Advancement of Teachers in Special Education. Dr. Dava O’Connor, chair of Lander’s Department of Teacher Education and coordinator of the university’s Special Education program, said Lander has been a CREATE participant since 2006. Lander and 10 other schools were selected based on their initial certification in special education, highly qualified faculty, geographic diversification and willingness to offer innovative programs. Designed to help currently employed special education teachers with restricted certification upgrade to full certification, the program also admits qualified, full-time public school employees, including paraprofessionals in nonteaching positions who want to pursue careers as special education teachers. There are 16 paraprofessionals enrolled in Lander’s program, the largest number in the state.
New Book Sheds Light on Olympic Games Lander assistant professor of history Dr. Kevin Witherspoon released his book Before the Eyes of the World: Mexico and the 1968 Olympic Games this summer just in time for the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing. Published by Northern Illinois University Press, the book begins by tracing the path that brought the Olympics to Mexico City but quickly changes gears to examine the image Mexico strove to portray to the world even as that image began to fall apart. The book also details protests by African-American athletes, Cold War confrontations on the field of sport and other aspects of the 1968 games.
The new book The Yamasee War: A Study of Culture, Economy and Conflict in the Colonial South looks back at a time when South and North Carolina were one and when many Native Americans struggled to rid the land of their new neighbors from across the Atlantic. Written by Dr. William Ramsey, chair of Lander’s Department of History and Philosophy, the book explores the political, economic and cultural events that led up to and followed a war between southeastern Native American tribes and South Carolinians. Ramsey’s book was published by the University of Nebraska Press in May.
Lander Partners with City, County for Campus Safety Training In its ongoing efforts to promote campus safety, Lander’s Police Department joined the Greenwood City Police Department and Greenwood County Sheriff’s Office this past summer to hold an active-shooter training session on the university campus. The drill provided insight on how to respond in the event of a shooting in a campus setting. The training session was just one part of Lander’s focus on campus safety. Following the 2007 shooting tragedy at Virginia Tech, Lander President Dr. Daniel Ball appointed a task force to study the university’s safety awareness and procedures. Stemming from recommendations by the task force, the university implemented a text messaging system – Lander Alert – that allows officials to instantly deliver important emergency information to subscribers. Earlier this year, Lander installed a siren system capable of broadcasting emergency tones and messages loud enough to be heard throughout campus. The university has also formed a Campus Emergency Response Team (CERT), which utilizes faculty and staff to provide additional emergency services to campus when professional emergency responders are not available. The team is trained in the areas of first aid and triage, search and rescue, and evacuating and closing campus.
Clearing the Way for RWS Complex Lander University has begun clearing the way for a recreation, wellness and sports complex on 25 acres of high-profile property located in the 500 block of E. Montague Ave. just two blocks from campus. Buildings in the old Greenwood Plaza have been razed, and the next step will be the construction of baseball, softball and soccer stadiums, tennis courts, a perimeter track, intramural fields and a playground for children. Self Regional Healthcare will continue to operate its fitness center on the site. “The RWS complex will be a tremendous asset to our students and to families in Greenwood,” said Adam Taylor, Lander vice president for Advancement. “It will also have a major impact on the business economy in Greenwood.” “We are seeking the financial support of our alumni and friends as we work to make the complex reality. Setting the pace in our fundraising efforts have been alumna Linda Dolny, who secured the naming rights to the baseball stadium; Capsugel, which secured naming rights to the track; and the City of Greenwood and the County of Greenwood, with their pledges of support.” Calling the complex “an exciting and ambitious effort,” Taylor said he looks forward to working with alumni, friends and businesses as Lander develops this public/private project. - 20 -
EE Experience Your Education
Lander University Board of Trustees L.B. Adams Jr. Ann B. Bowen Bobby M. Bowers Robert A. Brimmer Linda L. Dolny Maurice Holloway
Raymond D. Hunt, Vice Chair Glenn J. Lawhon Jr. Jack W. Lawrence Catherine K. Lee Mamie W. Nicholson, Secretary Sally E. Self
George R. Starnes Charles R. Thompson Jr. Fred M. Thrailkill S. Anne Walker, Chair Ricci Land Welch
Lander Executive Officers Daniel W. Ball University President Danny L. McKenzie Vice President for Academic Affairs Diane D. Newton Vice President for Business and Administration H. Randall Bouknight Vice President for Student Affairs J. Adam Taylor Vice President for University Advancement Jefferson J. May Athletics Director
University Relations Staff Charlotte Cabri, Editor David Lorenzatti, Writer Megan Price, Writer Russell Martin, Writer Kathy Goldsmith, Editorial Assistant Maria Scott, Designer Photos by Randy Pace of Pace Photography Cover illustration ÂŠiStockphoto.com Additional photos by University Relations Staff and Guest Contributors
Greenwood, South Carolina
The Lander University President's Report is a publication distributed primarily to alumni, faculty, staff and friends of the university to h...