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February 2014, issue 25





a Newsletter for Faculty, Staff, alumni and Friends of Norfolk State University Achieving Excellence. Success Beyond Measure.

They clean our buildings, paint and patch our walls, move our furniture, and maintain our grounds and keep up our buildings and systems. They are the men and women who make up the Department of Facilities Management. This special issue of Making waves is dedicated to those who form the foundation of Norfolk State University and take care of us.

Blake Leaves His Mark on NSU


hen Donald Blake first arrived on the Norfolk State campus in 1970 as a 17-year-old freshman, the library was housed in Tidewater Hall (now Brown Hall), Twin Towers where he stayed was the newest dormitory, the old student union had just opened and houses stood on what is now the Marty Miller Baseball Field. That was nearly 45 years ago. Now as the 62-year-old Blake, a mason plasterer in Facilities Management, prepares to retire, the campus has drastically changed. He has witnessed the construction of most of the buildings on campus. “NSU has grown and it has prospered,” he said. Today, the campus includes several recently built structures such as the Lyman Beecher Brooks Library, Student Center, Student Services Building and the nursing and classroom building Continued on page 4

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woman Painter

Right at Home at NSU Nancy Tan is used to being a woman in a man’s world.


he has spent her career there, first as a painter while on her tour of duty for the U.S. Navy, in civilian life while working for painting contractors and as a store paint associate at a Home Depot. Tan has endured some discrimination in the past because of her gender. During her past work experiences, there have been co-workers who have told her that because she’s a woman that she doesn’t know anything about painting. Now, she seems unfazed by that because she also knows that being a commercial woman painter has its advantages. “When I worked at Home Depot, a lot of women would come to me and ask me what I thought,” she said. “They felt more comfortable talking to another woman.” However, Tan, on staff at NSU since 2005, is right at home as the single female among the University’s three painters. “I work with two excellent guys,” she said of her supervisor Melvin Veale and co-worker Haywood Bennett. She takes a sense of pride in her work. Every wall Tan paints at NSU, she treats it as if it were her own. “I can walk in and paint your office and walk out, but you have to look at it every day,” said Tan. “So, I do the job as if it were my house or my office.”

Christopher D. Samuels

NSU’s Storm Troopers While many students, faculty, administrators and staff enjoyed the comforts of their homes during the two recent snowstorms that hit the area, a group of dedicated men and women rose from their beds and trudged to the campus so that we could all be safe, warm or fed. Those men and women were the storm’s unsung heroes. They cooked, they cleaned and kept the campus running even though the University was not operating on its normal schedule. Here are some of the faces of the storm—they represent all of the storm’s troopers: Christopher D. Samuels, Police Officer william Thomas Smith, inspector, Facilities Management elease Powell, housekeeping night supervisor, Facilities Management Mike Jones and Lorita walton, Thompson Hospitality



Making waves is published by the Office of Communications and Marketing.

william Thomas Smith

(757) 823-8373 Eddie N. Moore, Jr. Interim President and CEO Deborah C. Fontaine Interim Vice President for University Advancement Cheryl Bates-Lee AVP of University Relations

elease Powell

Regina Lightfoot Editor Stevalynn Adams Stan Donaldson, Jr. Christopher Setzer

Mike Jones and Lorita walton


Making Waves

CaMPUS BRieFS NSU Police Chief anthony H. walker has been selected as a primary negotiator by the U.S. Department of anthony walker Education for the purpose of representing HBCU’s and Minority Serving Institutions (MSI’s) in a series of sessions that will be held in Washington, D.C. The purpose of these sessions is to prepare and propose legislation to address changes to the Clery Act regulated by the U.S. Department of Education, and the Campus Crime Statistics Act made by the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA). Chief Walker will be in Washington, D.C. twice per month from January– March to attend committee meetings. Dr. James Corprew, assistant professor of business, served as a chairman and also presented a research paper entitled "Concerns and Expectations of Hospitality Management Students" at the Institute of Strategic and International Studies International Conference in January. The paper is co-authored by Dr. Jim Chen, department chair and associate dean of the School of Business, and Dr. Melinda HarrisPeoples, assistant professor of entrepreneurship. The paper has also been accepted for publication in the Journal of Academy for Advancement of Business Research. Hollisha Bridgers, ’07, School of Education graduate, was recognized as the 2014 Teacher of the Year at the Pennsylvania Avenue School in Atlantic City, N.J., where she teaches. Dr. Sandra J. DeLoatch, provost and vice president of academic affairs; Dr. arletha McSwain, professor Dr. Sandra Deloatch and dean of the School of Extended Learning; and

Dr. adebisi oladipupo, chief information officer and professor of engineering, have been invited Dr. adebisi oladipupo to present at the 2014 USA Funds Symposium at the Scottsdale Conference Center in Phoenix, during Session 3: Giving Your Students a Competitive Edge with Technology. In addition, Dr. oladipupo has successfully completed two certifications: CompTia Project+ and the ITIL Foundation Certificate in IT Service Management. Dr. Page Laws, dean of the Honors College, gave a talk: “Fred Astaire: Our American Mozart of Motion” for Dr. Page Laws WestminsterCanterbury residents in January. Honors College student ida Thompson, political science, had a research proposal accepted by a ida Thompson research think tank and network—The Mississippi Center for Intelligence and Security Studies. Will present her research at The Five Eyes Analytic Workshop at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Miss., in March. Dr. Geoffroy de Laforcade, associate professor of history, was a featured presenter at the Public Speakers Series Dr. Geoffroy Laforcade at Atlanta University. His talk was titled “Liberation by Labyrinth: Walter Rodney’s Pedagogy of Caribbean History.”

Dr. kai Zhang,’11 (above center), NSU’s first Ph.D. recipient in materials science and engineering, recently won the 2013-14 Council of Historically Black Graduate Schools/ProQuest Dissertation Award. His dissertation results have been published in more than 30 peer-reviewed journals. Dr. Zhang received his award and gave a presentation on his dissertation, “Development of Magnetic and Optic Nanomaterials for Biomedical Applications,” at the CHBGS conference in San Antonio.

Making Waves


Facilities Management@work To the men and women of Facilities Management Thanks for all you do!

kim Munday (Central Warehouse)

Ron Thompson (Central Warehouse)

evangeline Sawyer

andrew ward and John Saunders

Charles Brown

Blake Has Left His Mark

Continued from page 1

scheduled to open in January 2015. He has seen buildings such as the Lyman Beecher Brooks Library and the Student Center torn down and rebuilt. Blake has spent more than 70 percent of his life going to school and working here, and he has left his mark on this campus. In fact, one of the most enduring sites where his work can be seen is the President’s House. As a student in the Vocational Education Department, Blake and fellow students were called upon to help build the President’s House. His name is engraved along with the others on a plaque near the home’s front door. “Back then I took it as another assignment,” said Blake. “Now I look at it as one of my great accomplishments.” Other buildings where Blake did block work included the former Lyman Beecher Brooks Library and the Hamm Fine Arts Building. He has given Norfolk State 39 years of work service, beginning in an hourly position as a brick mason in 1975 and then becoming classified as a master plasterer five years later in 1980. Norfolk State has given him something too-from receiving his degree to meeting his wife, Shirley, whom he met in the lobby of Twin Towers South in 1974. They were married in 1976. Blake is astounded at the university’s growth and proud to have some part in it. “It’s amazing,” he said. “I think I will miss Norfolk State for a while, but I am going to enjoy my retirement.”

Norfolk State University Making Waves Feb. 2014